Communities in Yala and Ogoja local government areas of Cross River State was thrown into panic on sighting Fulani herdsmen arriving in two trailers from unknown destination. The youth quickly mobilized to send them out of their communities.
The youth leader of Okuku in Yala Local Government Area, Joseph Odey Owonah, was gathered to affirm that the Fulani people came into the communities on Sunday in two trucks loaded to the brim.
In a media interaction on Tuesday, Owonah had admitted that the arrival of the Fulanis created serious tension in the communities and the environs.
He narrated that on arrival, the strange visitors, mostly women and children started scattering themselves into different locations, including bushes in the communities; sending deeper fears into the people.
The community youth leader reveal;ed that the Hausa settlers who have been living in Garki for many years, first sighted the Fulani people on arrival and were the first to raise alarm of imminent danger and called the attention of the people about the “new faces” that have come to join them. The youth were immediately spurred into action.
“Fulani came into our towns in two long trailers, entered on Sunday and distributed themselves into bushes around. The youths of Okuku and Ogoja summed up courage and drove them away.
“We escorted them up to boundary of Benue State. We resisted their stay here. They were much, over a thousand, especially children and women. It appeared as if they were driven out of where they were staying and they came to take solace here.
“The trailers they came with were covered with tarpaulin such that it was difficult to note that they are human beings,” Owonah had narrated.
The youth leader maintained: “I am calling on the people of Ogoja, residing at home, to remain vigilant against possible invasion into Ogoja or its environs. We will not accommodate Fulanis who will come and cause chaos or give our people sleepless nights. We will not condone any act of forceful invasion into our territory or neighbourhood.
“We will resist them in our numbers and won’t allow them stay, not anytime soon.”
The Cross River State Police Public Relations Officer, Ms Irene Ugbo, was said to have acknowledged that two trucks loaded with Fulani herdsmen arrived the communities but were turned back without delay.
“It’s true that two trucks loaded with Fulani herdsmen arrived the town but were chased back by the communities and security agents. The areas are calm and quiet,” she had said.