Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State and his Ondo State counterpart, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, on Sunday, visited Shasa community in Ibadan, Oyo State where they appealed for calm and peaceful coexistence between the Hausa community and the Yorubas.
The two governors who spoke during the visit, urged the residents of the community and Oyo State, particularly the Yoruba and Hausa to stop taking laws into their hands.
Governor Makinde warned that criminals masquerading as hoodlums will be fished out and dealt with.
Makinde assured of ensuring that normalcy quickly returns to Shasha market. To this end, he said the government would immediately work on giving palliatives to persons affected in the crisis. He decried the carnage that characterised the clash, stating that the government will fish out and deal with criminals masquerading as hoodlums to fuel the crisis.
Furthermore, Gov Makinde charged security agencies to step up their efforts at calming the situation and particularly dominate Shasha area to ensure no more deaths are recorded. He explained that the curfew declared on Saturday is in force, though he noted that he was initially reluctant to declare the curfew because he did not want anything that will negatively affect the means of livelihood of the people.
“The last time I came here, about six weeks ago, some shops belonging to Hausa and Yoruba people got burnt.
“So, you have been living together peacefully and all I am pleading to you is, no matter what is making anyone angry, we will solve it with patience.
“I was reluctant to declare curfew here because I feel the economic wellbeing of everyone here is important, and because this is where you get what you use to feed yourselves. I will engage with your leaders this evening. One thing is, if you allow hoodlums to blow this matter out of proportion, no one will be able to say where the crisis will end. By the grace of God, I pray we don’t lose any more lives.
“We must not lose any life needlessly anymore. What the government will do to ensure that those whose houses, shops were burnt, we will rebuild immediately. “But please, I beg of you, let us stop fighting with ourselves. I can assure you that we will deal with the situation.
“We must continue to maintain the peace here. Those who are hoodlums here will be dealt with but those who are law-abiding will be compensated for what they have lost.”
Speaking on behalf of South-West governors, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu urged the Yoruba and Hausa to rekindle the spirit of brotherliness with which they have lived as one for many years. He held that the clash may not be unconnected with built-up anger of Nigerians about the state of affairs of the nation.
While expressing optimism that the nation will overcome its challenges, he cautioned residents against taking to fighting and counter-attack to express their displeasure. He also urged residents to cooperate with the Oyo State governor to remedy and take charge of the situation.
Akeredolu said: “I have come here on behalf of my colleagues in Ekiti, Lagos, Osun and Ogun. All of them have sent messages. Ogun has its own crisis it is battling with, so does Lagos. But as the chairman, I decided to come around to appeal to us.
“Though we are here in our fatherland, our own sons and daughters are in another person’s fatherland. So, let us think about this and continue to live in peace with one another. We don’t need to fight ourselves.
“We have security agencies that you can call their attention to any issue that could cause crisis. Let us not take the law into our hands,”