Herdsmen invade Eddy Olafeso’s farm, destroy N10m cassava

Some herdsmen have led their cattle into a cassava farm at Igbaraoke, headquarters of Ifedore local government area of Ondo State, leaving at its wake a destruction of farm products valued at N10 million.

The 30 hectares farm, owned by a Chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and former Commissioner for Information in the state, Dr Eddy Olafeso, was totally destroyed during the invasion.

The Nigerian Monitor gathered that the cassava farm was reduced to a level field after the invasion by the herdsmen and their cattle.

The owner of the farm, Eddy Olafeso, was almost in tears while lamenting the destruction brought on his farm.

Narrating his ordeal in the hands of the nomadic herdsmen, the farm manager, Adeola Ariyo, revealed that the herdsmen went a step further by uprooting the whole cassava for their cattle to feed on.

According to him, workers on the farms concluded the weeding of the farm after spending about N600,000 before going for Christmas break only to return to the farm to meet an empty farm.

Ariyo said there were traces of the footprints of the cows and the herdsmen at the cassava farm, saying most of the cassava were uprooted and given to the cattle to feed on.

The farm manager said they planned to embark on harvesting of the cassava and reinvest the money on more capital projects, but the hope had been dashed with the destruction of the cassava farm

He, however, said the incident had been officially reported to the headquarters of Amotekun in Ifedore local government, saying “cows have turned the 30 hectares of land into a grazing field”

He said the colossal damage done on the farm by the herdsmen and their cows affected the health of his principal, saying “the herdsmen destroyed the entire farm and destroyed our means of survival.

“I was dazed when I got to the farm and saw the level of destruction. I immediately called my master to inform him and he was devastated with the news.The incident has been reported to the office of the Amotekun Corps”

Meanwhile, Olafeso has written a letter to the state governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, to intimate the state government about the development, noting that his 30 hectares cassava farm under the Ondo State Agribusiness Empowerment Center in Igbaraoke had been destroyed by herdsmen.

In the letter addressed to the governor, the Senior Special Adviser to Governor Akeredolu on Agriculture, Mr. Akin Olotu and the Commander of Amotekun, Chief Adetunji Adeleye, Olafeso lamented that over N10m had been destroyed.

The letter read: “We arrived at our farm in Igbaraoke this morning, 11th January, 2023 to witness the destruction of our cassava farm by herdsmen.

“I went on inspect of our farm on the 23rd of December, 2022 after we completed the weeding of the entire plantation. We were expectant of good harvest but between Christmas and New Year our farm have been plundered.

“The pain inflicted on the family and the millions of naira lost can only be imagined. Our sweat for over one year was taken away just like that.

“Your Excellency, this case was reported to the Amotekun station at Igbaraoke this morning. These evil herdsmen must be brought to book, otherwise the effect of this insanity will shake the state to its foundation.”

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