Any attempt to harm Soyinka‘ll have dire consequences, group warns

February 11, 2021
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The Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum (SMBLF), has warned that any attempt to harm Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka would have dire consequences.

The group issued the warning on Wednesday while reacting to an alleged besieged of Soyinka’s residence in Abeokuta by suspected Fulani Herdsmen who stormed the residence around 1pm on Tuesday.

The attack comes just days after Soyinka in an interview with BBC warned that the failure of the Muhammadu Buhari administration to nip the activities of Fulani herdsmen in the bud could trigger another civil war.

Reacting to the development, the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum (SMBLF), in a statement, said the attack was enough evidence to people still living in denial about the intention of criminally-minded herdsmen and those shielding them.

The statement jointly signed by Yinka Odumakin, South West; Chief Guy Ikokwu, South East; Senator Bassey Henshaw, South-South and Dr. Isuwa Dogo, Middle Belt read, “If there are people still living in denial about the intention of these criminals and those shielding them, there is no further evidence than this.

“We also want to warn them of the implications of hurting a man like Soyinka with the fragile unity of the country. Let President Buhari know that these criminals are working hard to make him the last President of One Nigeria.”

Meanwhile, Former Minister of Power and Steel, Dr. Olu Agunloye has offered an explanation of what transpired in the course of the invasion into Soyinka’s home insisting that there was no attempt by the herdsmen to break into his home.

Agunloye, in a statement on Wednesday, said the herdsmen led their cattle to graze in Prof Soyinka’s unfenced compound despite his strong warnings to the herdsmen.

According to him, Soyinka has been living in the forest at the outskirts of Abeokuta in Area designated as GRA since late 1980s.

He noted that in recent time’s cattle herders have desecrated the grounds of Professor Soyinka’s compound by flooding it with cows prompting the Nobel Laureate to summon the herdsmen and sternly warned them to stop the ugly practice as it was unacceptable.

“However, the herdsmen broke the rules yesterday thinking that Prof Soyinka was not home. When the Prof accosted them, they fled into the bush leaving their cows behind. Prof Soyinka reported the incident to the Police which later arrested the herdsmen and their cows.

“We can say categorically that Prof Soyinka and his house were not physically attacked but his compound was violated by recalcitrant herdsmen who wanted to turn his compound to a grazing field. Prof Soyinka and his family remain okay in their Abeokuta home,” Agunloye said.

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