Chairman Oyo State Security Network codenamed Amotekun Corps, General Kunle Togun (rtd) has warned Yoruba people to be security conscious because the foreign Fulani herdsmen in their midst are poised to make the big strike, any time.
Togun, a former Director of Military Intelligence (DMI) and former Deputy Director-General of State Security Service (SSS), advised people to be prepared to defend themselves.
According to the Oyo Amotekun boss, the foreigners have been penetrating localities in the region to monitor the environment over the years to pave way for the big strike.
The strike, according to intelligence report, he said will be aided by local collaborators based on the belief God has given them Nigeria, especially, the Southwest as inheritance.
Togun spoke after a lecture he delivered at an event staged by the Institute of Peace and Strategic Studies Student Association (IPSSSA) University of Ibadan.
His lecture was entitled: “Security Challenges, The significance of regional security dimensions.”
He said:“The foreign Fulani herdsmen have invaded South West. There is nowhere in the South West that they are not. They are there.
“They are the Okada riders. They are the ones using wheelbarrows to sell carrots and other things. I said they are foot soldiers.
They said they have come in to take the inheritance given to them by Allah and that is Nigerian land, particularly South West.
“So, they will still strike. I am not just screaming aloud. So, everybody has to be ready.
“It is only a foolish soldier that would say he wants to die for his country. His death cannot help his country. You are to stay alive to help your country.
“When as a soldier, you are sent to capture a particular place, they did not send you to go and die. If he gets there and scared them and the people run away, he has done what he supposed to do.
“But if he was shot at and he fired back, he did not shoot to kill anybody, but to defend himself and keep himself alive, so that he can help his country.
“For over 10 years, I have been saying it that the 10 local government areas of Oke-Ogun and the three local government areas of Ibarapa, both in Oyo State, have been saturated by these foreign Fulanis.
“After that, they brought in their children, selling pepper, tomatoes, carrots and so on with wheelbarrows.
“All of us are looking at them. You cannot say Amotekun will do everything. Members of the public must help with credible information.
“My advice to the Federal Government is that they should support regional security outfits.”
“Before Amotekun took off, this problem has been there. They have invaded all Yorubaland. These people are just starting the plans they already had on ground, not that they are just coming in.
And these foreign Fulani are still coming in. They have saturated already Yorubaland before Amotekun was established.”
General Togun for many years have been drumming about the dangers of the foreign Fulani herdsmen in Nigeria, who invade farms and allow their animals to eat up crops and who also are ready to kill when the farmers complain.
In an interview with Nigerian Tribune in 2017, he spoke about a security meeting he attended in Abuja, where he made specific mention of the menace of the foreign herdsmen.
Here is a reproduction of part of the interview:
I was also in Abuja last June; all of us who were former directors of military intelligence were invited to Abuja by the current director of military intelligence. He tabled the security challenges of the country and we all had to make contributions.
When it came to the issue of Fulani herdsmen, people said different things. When it came to my turn, I said these Fulani herdsmen, who the Northerners see as part of them, are foreigners.
They are foreigners; they are from Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger Republic and Chad; that is why they are so merciless. They are of no fixed address. I told them that Fulani people should call these herdsmen and ask where they come from in Northern Nigeria and ask them who their district heads are. The herdsmen are not Nigerians.
I am a security man and I know my level of security status in the world. Some of these herdsmen were Al-Qaeda terrorists who took over Northern Mali and France had to send troops while ECOWAS and African Union added troops to expel them from Northern Mali and hand over the territory back to Mali. That was where they came about their assault rifles. Why are security agents not investigating how Fulani herdsmen are going about with AK 47?
I told them in Abuja that you call them Fulani, but we call them Bororo in Oke Ogun and they have been harassing us for the past 25 years; it is not a joke. I said at DAWN three years ago that the 10 local governments of Oke Ogun and three local governments of Ibarapa were under the siege of herdsmen, but nobody listened and I see the invasion of these people as if someone is trying to expand their territory to Yorubaland.
Do you think the problem can be solved through the provision of grazing routes across the country?
How can anyone legislate on grazing routes? How? How much grazing routes have these people been given in the North? They are now saying we should give grazing routes.
There is a claim that there are grazing routes across the country.
Who made the grazing routes?
Is there no grazing route in Saki?
Let me tell you, from a very long time ago, they used to take cows from the North to Lagos on foot. That was when they used to pass through here and that is what they are now saying that there used to be grazing routes. Who created the grazing routes? The Fulani herdsmen we grew up to know around here do not graze on anyone’s farm; we lived with them for decades. But these foreign invaders come and start grazing on people’s farms. They go to people’s farms to graze and tell you do you want their cows to die and once you challenge them, they shoot and kill. You see, things are happening and some idiots are sitting down somewhere making case for non-Nigerians. And do they know that if we give grazing grounds to these clowns, tomorrow they will say they own the place. That was what started the problem in Jos till date. That was what started the problem in Agatu.
And someone expects that to happen in the South-West? Nobody should give grazing grounds in the South-West.