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Oyo, Kwara boundary disputes: Lawal preaches peaceful co-existence

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Oyo State Deputy Governor ,Bayo Lawal (5th right) and members of National Boundary Commission on Monday, in Ibadan

From Stella Obi, Ibadan

OYO State Deputy Governor, Bayo Lawal has proffered that peaceful co-existence is the solution to interstate boundary dispute among affected communities.

  Lawal stated this on Monday, while receiving members of the National Boundary Commission (NBC) under the leadership of Adamu Adaji in Ibadan. The delegation was led by Mrs Amina Nyako.

  In his remarks, the  deputy governor emphasised that Surulere Local Government from the state of Oyo and Kaima Local Government from Kwara State are the boundaries between the two states, which are contentious areas because there have been clashes in the past.

  According to him, it is crucial to understand that the history of the border between the states of Oyo and Kwara dates to ancient, adding that in addition to locating the border between the two states, one must also locate the border between the western and northern regions. As a result, it’s often difficult to say which one.

  “In my experience as a lawyer, it is always difficult to grant a state a boundary, regardless of the outcome of visits, but we can only work toward peaceful coexistence if it is done with mutual understanding. Take Palestine and other nations who are still at war as examples. To ensure that our people live in harmony, we can only make individual efforts.

  “About last two weeks, we also flagged off road construction with Osun State where I have an advice that we should try to start from our own zone, but we went for the flag off where the chief judge of Osun State tried to raise a pointer to let you know how the boundary issue is”, he said.

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Lawal opined that a joint visit was necessary to determine what agreements the two,  states have made, and that if they cannot come to an agreement, then legal action may be taken.

  In her remarks, Mrs Amina Nyako praised the deputy governor for the warm welcome received and expressed their sincere gratitude to Governor Seyi Makinde for approving their request to hold town hall meetings and go on field trips to border towns and villages along the Oyo/Kwara interstate border.

  She informed that they were happy to be in Ibadan, the capital of Oyo State, for a town hall meeting and field trips to the border communities of Kishi (Irepo Local Government Area of Oyo State) and its neighboring villages and settlements that share an interstate border with Baruten and Kiaima of Kwara State.

  The visit, according to her, “is intended to harmonize views and positions, update records regarding the geographical composition and identities of people who occupied the border corridor in connection to the boundary line.”

  Nyako who praised the Oyo State Government for its compassion and the outstanding support provided by the state authorities taking part in the NBC activities, emphasised the necessity for further collaborative efforts to find answers to the state’s boundary issues.

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