At Least Five People Were Killed and 50 Houses Razed as Kogi Communities Clash Over Cashew
Five people were killed, with over 50 houses razed at Aloko-Oguma in Bassa Local Government Area of Kogi State after harvest from a disputed cashew plantation, weekend, led to crisis.
The dispute between the Bassa Kwomu and the Igala over harvest at a disputed cashew plantation, reportedly led to crisis in the communities, as Igala claimed the Bassa Kwomu had earlier killed one of their members and buried him secretly without a trace of the grave, a development that angered the Igala, who reportedly mobilised for reprisal attack.
The long time rivalry between both tribes and the cashew harvest fracas being an opportunity for both tribes to unleash their anger on each other, made residents of the Igala community flee over a perceived reprisal attacks by the Bassa Kwomu.
The reprisal attack, carried out Friday morning, was said to have left five persons dead on the side of Bassa Kwomu, with 50 houses burnt and property worth millions of naira destroyed in the fracas, leading to the deployment of armed soldiers and policemen to the community to prevent further clashes.
Vanguard reported that the Sole Administrator of the Local Government, Samuel Alumka, and the member representing the area in the state House of Assembly, Sunday Shigaba, who visited the community weekend, appealed to the warring parties to sheathe their swords.
Confirming the incident, the Kogi State Police Public Relation Officer ASP William Aya said the report that five people died in the communal clash was not true.
According to him, ” Only one person died in the clash. The deceased is an old woman. So the information that five persons died is out of place.”
Cashew nuts farming is currently a big business in Kogi State, particularly in the eastern part of the state where lots of cashew trees are planted by locals.