Suspected Fulani herdsmen were reported to have opened fire on a first year student of the Ambrose Alli University Ekpoma, Collins Ojierakhi some weeks back at Ugboha in Esan South East Local Government Area of Edo State.
The deceased was killed alongside his three other friends who were said to be returning home from an errand on a motorcycle.
The incident occurred penultimate Friday at about 7:30pm when Collins and his friends were on their way back to Ugboha from Uromi.
The killings forced Governor Godwin Obaseki and the state Commissioner of Police, Babatunde Kokumo to visit the village last Sunday when Obaseki gave security agents seven days to arrest the perpetrators, Vanguard reports.
Apart from Collins, other killed include a toddler and a secondary school student, Victor Momodu. Collins’ father, Mr Festus Ojierakhi, narrated:
“I was in the house eating at about 8pm when I asked about where my son had gone to. I was told he went to Uromi with his friends. Later, around 9pm, the mother of my son´s friend came to the house, crying that herdsmen had killed her son. I rushed out of the house and asked about my own son.
I was told he died too with his friend. We immediately ran to the scene of the attack. When we got there, we were told that the police had come to take the corpses to Ubiaja mortuary. I was told my son and two others including the friend died.
They said the other person that died was Igbo. The story as narrated by eye witnesses was that as my son was riding home on his Okada, some herdsmen and their cattle blocked the road and they waited for them to leave the road.
Immediately they passed, some of their people in the bush opened fire on my son and his friends and they died on the spot. I have been to the Area Commander’s office and they said they were investigating the matter. I don´t know what to do. This is a young boy that just entered university”.
Obaseki who visited the families of the victims, last Monday, condemned the killings and promised that the state will spare no resources in fishing out the perpetrators for prosecution.
He reiterated his directive to security agencies to apprehend the bandits within seven days. The visits to the families of the victims were followed by a Town Hall Meeting held in Ubiaja where the governor unveiled new measures to tackle violent crime in Edo.
The measures, according to him, include the overhaul of Operation Thunderstorm, the taskforce dedicated to fighting crime in the state.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr Johnson Kokumo, said that the governor had been proactive in dealing with security in the state. He went further to say that the setting up of a committee to mediate on farmers/herdsmen clashes is a step in the right direction.”