Some herdsmen have been accused of setting a solar power station on fire in Awowo, Ewekoro Local Government Area of Ogun State.
The incident occurred on Tuesday, causing confusion among members of the community and residents of Abeokuta.
A report that surfaced on social media on Tuesday night claimed that Awowo was “attacked” by herdsmen, who wanted to set the community on fire.
This generated tension in Ogun, considering the proximity of the area to Abeokuta, the state capital.
But, the Alawowo of Awowo, Oba AbdulGafar Olasukanmi Tijani, said the community was not attacked by herdsmen.
Oba Tijani confirmed to Newsmen that it was true that Fulani cattle rearers burnt down a £15,000 worth solar power system, which he erected in his community.
However, the traditional ruler said it was not an attack, but an accident from careless cattle rearers who set the bush on fire and allowed the fire to get out of control.
The monarch recalled that his community was attacked in December when some people were kidnapped by suspected herdsmen.
‘We were not attacked. It was careless cattle rearers. Their cattle don’t have anything to eat so they set the bush on fire; and you know there’s harmattan, so they could not control the fire. That’s what happened. It’s not that we’re attacked.’
‘Though we were attacked in December last year. They kidnapped four people. This one that just happened was an accident,’ the Alawowo said in a telephone interview.
The monarch told our correspondent that the community has been living peacefully with the herdsmen, saying there are laid down rules and regulations.
‘We have peacefully lived together because we hold meetings from time to time. I have warned them not to leave their area for other places. This one that happened, the owner of the cows was living somewhere and took his cattle to somewhere else to go and rear,’ the monarch said, adding that the police have been informed.
Oba Tijani maintained that he would not be able to confirm whether or not the owner of the cattle would take responsibility for the burnt property.
He appealed to residents to remain calm, urging them not to nurse any fear.
AFRICA TODAY NEWS, NEW YORK