About 500 Fulani herdsmen are reportedly camped outside the village of Ikpa Ocha in Aro-Ndizuogu, Ideato South Local Government Area (LGA), Imo State and neighbouring Ihitte in Orumba South LGA, Anambra State. They are reportedly camped outside Umunze also in Orumba, as well. The herdsmen are said to be possibly preparing to launch an attack on the communities.
One witness claimed: “They gathered behind our house throughout the night. Security guys told us they were carrying machine guns”.
Another witness indicated that local farmers, whose crops were being eaten by the herdsmen’s cows, had mixed some unknown chemicals in buckets of water and kept these around their farms. The cows then drank the poisoned water and about five were said to have died. The witness said “the herdsmen were furious and are gathering their people to attack our people”.
One Lagos-based businessman, who comes from nearby town of Okigwe, has informed Naijiant.com that he has given the herdsmen 72 hours to leave his hometown. This deadline runs out on Saturday morning. The businessman claims he has mobilised hundreds of armed “bad boys” who are ready to preemptively attack the massed herdsmen.
There is no indication at the time of writing that the police and other security agents have taken any steps to prevent the likely violence and possible loss of lives and property.