The crisis over the ownership of a parcel of land and fishing ponds between kabawa and Onumaye people of Koto-karfe Local Government Area of kogi State turned bloody yesterday, resulting in the loss of a life, while scores were injured.
In the fracas many houses were also burnt by some irate youths of Kabawa in the Lokoja metropolis.
The incident was said to have been ignited when the youths from Kabawa were allegedly attacked by others from Onumaye. Two unidentified persons from the former community were said to have been abducted, by those from the neighbouring community, while the aggerived side were said to have gone on the rampage.
The palace of the chief of Onumaye was reportedly set ablaze in the process, and one Baba Salisu stabbed to death.
According to the ward head, Mallam Abubakar Yahaya, the crisis over the land and the ponds started when one Yakubu Danjuma, was made the chief of Onumaye, and built his palace in kabawa, claiming ownership of the land..
His words: “We inherited the ponds and farmland from our forefathers over 150 year ago. The fishing festival is celebrated annually with people from all walks of lives coming to grace it, but when Danjuma was turbaned early this year, and he was supposed to relocate to his village to rule his people, he stayed put in Lokoja claiming the ownership of this land with us.
“We complained about this development to Maigeri of Lokoja, Alhaji Muhammad Kabir Makarfi III, who brokered peace with the Ohimege Igu of koton-karfe Alhaji Abuldulrazak Isah koton. They agreed that the land and the ponds actually belonged to the kabawa people and ordered the warring parties to embrace peace”.
The father of the deceased, Salihu Abdullahi urged the government and the security agents to bring the killers of his son to book.
He calles for quick resolution of the crisis to enable tthe people “who are now living in fear of reprisal continue with their trade”.
Makarfi urged the people to respect the rights of others, and desist from acts of violence, saying that what happened was allien to the people ofthe area.
Efforts made to confirm the development from the Kogi State Police proved abortive, as calls to the command’s spokesperson, William Aya, proved abortive.