Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State has warned people trying to chase Fulanis out of the Southwest to allow them to stay as they had been in the region for a long time.
Fayemi spoke at a meeting between Fulani and Yoruba leaders in Akure on Monday, pointing out that the Fulani had established marriage and business relationships with Yorubas over the years.
“This is your home. You’ve lived here, married and done business with us. Nobody’s going anywhere,” Fayemi said.
The governor spoke against the backdrop of an ultimatum given to unregistered herders to vacate forest reserves in Ondo State by Governor Rotimi Aderedolu, which expired on Monday.
Similarly, a self-acclaimed Yoruba Rights Advocate, Sunday Igboho, on Friday evicted Fulanis in Igangan area of Oyo State at the expiry of a one week quit notice over their alleged acts of criminality.
On Saturday, Jan. 16, Igboho stormed the home of Seriki Fulani in Oyo State, Saliu Abdulkadir, to issue a seven-day quit notice to him and members of his community over allegations that they had been kidnapping and killing people in Igangan.
The actions by the Yoruba leaders have sparked ethnic tension and threats of war and pitted the Ondo State Government against the Presidency.
However, Fayemi tried to clarify the ultimatum by Akeredolu and said: “the statement by the Ondo State Government had no eviction reference.”
Fulanis face stigmatisation and stereotypes across Nigeria for their alleged acts of terror on their neighbours and experts warn that the attitude might drive many to join criminal gangs.
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