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Friday, December 2, 2022

Unknown persons destroy farmland

There was palpable tension and threat of a breakdown of law and order at Aponmu Lona community in Isinkan in Akure South local government area of Ondo State, as farmers and residents have raised the alarm over destruction of farmland by some suspected thugs.

They alleged that the Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi of using the thugs to chase them out of their farmland.

The residents told Journalists in Akure that the thugs invaded the community with a bus on Monday, 31 October, 2022 and allegedly chased Farmers away from their farmland with dangerous weapons.

They said the thugs later came with a bulldozer in the evening and started bulldozing their cocoa farmland and other crops.

The Olu Aponmu Lona Idanre, Chief Adeyemi Bajulaiye said no fewer than 100 farmers were affected and over 1,000 hectares of farmland earmarked for destruction.

The farmers said the development has affected means of livelihood of the Farmers just as Residents now live in fear.

“People are not happy in the community, the thugs came without any notice and started chasing everybody away on the farmland.

They were armed and residents have been living in fear since their arrival.”

He alleged that the hoodlums said they were sent to the community to clear the farmland by the Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi.

He named some Ago Akure chiefs who allegedly sponsored the attack.

Some of the farmers; Adewale  Elujobade, Mr Sina Oyewole, Mr Thomas Okokoro, Mrs Sadatu Audu, Andrew Ogunsode, Oriowo Amos, Linus Moses, Oyewole Babatunde, said they have been farming on the land for over 100 years.

They said in 2014, however, some people who claimed to be agents of the Deji of Akure, and were brought by one Olu Olokuta, Miller Olatubosun, came to the farm but were not allowed to do anything on the land.

“We are surprised when another set of people came yesterday morning, chased us away and started bulldozing the farmland.

They have returned to the place this morning, destroying more cocoa farm.

This is a direct assault and invitation to anarch,” they said

They appealed to Ondo state Governor, Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu SAN to call the Deji to order in the interest of peace and tranquillity.

They said series of petitions had been written to the AIG on the matter.

Meanwhile, in his reaction, the Deji of Akure Kingdom through his Chief Press Secretary, Michael Adeyeye said, “the issue of destruction of farmland is totally false. The truth of the matter is that Aponmu belongs to Akure and there is no tussle on that at all.

“The Deji is not in any way involved any form of farm destruction anywhere either in Aponmu Lona or any part of Aponmu.

“What took place was the fact that the Olu in the Community got the approval of the Deji to carry out a survey plan in some portion of Aponmu which is an integral part of Akure Land.

 “All those involved are being adequately carried along in that process. So, the issue of thugs invading any land is totally false.

“Let me also say for clarity, that there is nothing like destruction of farmland in any part of Aponmu. Let it be on record that such exercise is not a strange one, more so that such area needs a survey and its being done with the consent of the necessary stakeholders,” the Deji said.


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