The leader of the New Era group of the Oodua People’s Congress, Rasak Arogundade, has said the group cannot stop the activities of killer herdsmen and kidnappers among them in the South-West without the backing of the governors and leaders in the region.
Arogundade said this in Lagos on Friday in an interview with newsmen.
He said members of the OPC were worried by the activities of herdsmen, some of who he alleged were into kidnapping, robbery and raping of women among other other criminal activities in the region.
The OPC leader stated that his group could stop the herdsmen from operating in the South-West, saying the group needed the support of Yoruba leaders, especially the governors to do so.
He lamented the influx of herdsmen into the region, stressing that their activities had led to the killing of residents and the destruction of farmlands and the farmers.
Arogundade said the abduction of an orthopedic surgeon of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, Prof Olayinka Adegbehingbe, by some herdsmen along the Ibadan-Ile-Ife Expressway, among others herders’ excesses, underscored the need to rise against the hoodlums and stop their operations in the region.
He added, “The South-West governors have not contacted us for now. There is nothing serious that we can do without the governors backing us. The outgoing governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, was the first governor to give these people grazing land in the South-West.
“All of them were trying to curry (President Muhammadu) Buhari’s favour. But see the way it has ended for him. Governor Akinwunmi Ambode also created a place for the herdsmen around Magbon in Badagry.
“Although we know that these people are in the South-West and are wreaking havoc, we cannot stop them because if we do that and something happens, the governors will disown us.”
He argued that the leaders in the region had their selfish agendas to protect, which would not allow them to say the truth.
“But some of these leaders will not say anything because of their selfish interests. They don’t want to say anything that will upset the President. But let us wait and see how far they can go,” he said.
He urged the people in the region to remain vigilant so that the hoodlums would not drive them away from their homes.