Ooni denounces ethnic clash as one killed in Ife

A man whose identity is yet to be ascertained has been reported dead following a land dispute at a village in Ifeland, Osun State.
Ooni of Ife

A man whose identity is yet to be ascertained has been reported dead following a land dispute at a village in Ifeland, Osun State.

This came as a senior Ooni of Ife Chief, the Lowa of Ife, Adekola Adeyeye, denounced a reported clash between Yoruba and Hausa residents in the ancient city on Tuesday.

It was gathered that some Ife young men at Obalogun village via Ile-Ife were involved in a hot altercation over a land dispute and one of the parties fired a gunshot, killing the victim on the spot.

The Guardian learnt that attempt to revive the deceased proved abortive as he died before he was taken to the hospital.

A source in Ile-Ife said that attempt to avenge the deceased’s death led to commotion in the town, especially around Lagere, Mokuro Road areas of the town.

Adeyeye, in a statement, said the perpetrators of the acts had been identified and their names made available to security operatives in the town.

He, therefore, warned against any attempt to cause a crisis in the town, saying there was no clash between the Hausa and Yoruba residents in the ancient town.

He, however, confirmed the death of one victim and also urged the relatives of the deceased to remain calm, saying the police would eventually ensure justice in the matter.

“We are warning anyone with intent to cause a crisis in Ile-Ife to steer clear of the town. Uniformed and secret police operatives are in the town to deal with any troublemaker.

‘’We are also aware of the crisis, which led to the death of a young man in the town. We have identified his killers and police operatives are on their trail,” he said.

Meanwhile, the state’s Police Command Public Relations Officer, Yemisi Opalola, said the Commissioner of Police, Olawale Olokode, had deployed men of the Police Force to the town and was personally in Ife to monitor the development.

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The Commander, U.S. Africa Command, U General Stephen Townsend, wrapped up a three-day West African visit February 22-25, 2021, with a stopover in Nigeria to meet with the nation’s leaders and further the long-standing partnership and security cooperation between the two countries.

A press statement by the Embassy on Friday, said: “During the visit, Townsend met with the Nigerian President’s Chief of Staff, Ibrahim Gambari, and National Security Adviser, Babagan Monguno, to discuss regional security issues and to express the command’s gratitude for the assistance provided during a hostage rescue operation last year.

“When we asked for their help, the Nigerian government answered the call. Our hostage recovery mission in October would have been impossible without their support.

“They quickly provided assistance that helped the U.S. military to save an American life. That is a strong example of our partnership with Nigeria.”

Townsend also met with senior military officials, including the Minister of Defence, Bashir Salihi Magash, and the Chief of Defence Staff, General Leo Irabor, to talk about on-going cooperation in the region and greater maritime security and threat mitigation.

Nigeria is a key partner in countering violent extremist organizations throughout the Lake Chad Basin.

Townsend said furthermore: “The bilateral relationship between Nigeria and the U.S. is built on several pillars including security cooperation.

“U.S. Africa Command will do our part to advance the security cooperation pillar, so that Nigerians can enjoy the more secure future they all deserve.”

As close partners, the U.S. and Nigeria have worked at ensuring the collaborative relationship continues to grow to include a commitment to interoperability. Nigeria purchased 12 A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft, which will be delivered later this year.

“Nigeria’s purchase of A-29 Super Tucano aircraft is another example of their commitment to interoperability and security in the region,” he added. “Our economic relationship with Nigeria is already strong, and we look forward to the continued strengthening of security relationships. Nigeria’s leaders understand the importance of a collaborative approach to ensuring stability in West Africa and partnering on areas of mutual interest.”

The Commander also met with the U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard.

Leonard said: “General Townsend’s visit to Nigeria demonstrates the strategic importance the United States places on our bilateral relationship with Nigeria.

“Our security cooperation partnership with Nigeria’s military will strengthen the country’s capabilities to secure land and sea borders, enhance overall security, and combat terrorism in the North East.”

As part of the visit, Townsend participated in a wreath-laying ceremony at the Nigeria Military National Cemetery to honour those who have given their lives in the service of their nation.

During the visit, the delegation expressed their condolences for the seven service men killed in the crash of a Nigerian Air Force aircraft in Abuja.