Imo House of Assembly has raised alarm over the menace of herdsmen in Okigwe which is believed to have already claimed one life.
Speaking on a motion brought before the House under matter of urgent public importance, at plenary Tuesday, the chief sponsor of the motion and member for Owerri Municipal State constituency, Hon. Lugard Osuji lamented what he described as the destruction of crops in people’s farms by cows noting that the disturbing development has already put resident’s of the affected areas in Okigwe in fear even as one life is said to have been lost according to the motion. He, however, said the issue was being managed to avoid escalation.
Hon. Osuji urged the state government and relevant security agencies to wade into the issue to avoid escalation.
Seconding the motion, the member for Obowo state constituency, Hon. Kennedy Ibe said the matter required urgent attention to prevent a repeat of the situation in Benue State and part of the country. He noted that the crisis that pitched herdsmen against their host communities in states like Benue, Taraba, Adamawa, Delta among others usually start like the incident in Okigwe.
Hon. Ikechukwu Amuka (Ideato South) raised alarm over the influx of herders into the state saying that places like Akokwa in Ideato North and Ideato South have also witnessed the menacing activities of cattle rearers from the north leading to confrontations between the herdsmen and host communities. Amuka urged the state government to meet with heads of Hausa-Fulani communities in Imo State to resolve the impasse.
The house unanimously passed the prayer of the motion in the affirmative when the speaker, Rt. Hon. Acho Ihim put the motion to vote.
Meanwhile the reported influx of herders in the Imo State and the resultant clashes with host communities has raised security concerns in the state especially, with the reported death of three persons in Ebonyi State by herdsmen two days ago.