Four persons havebeen killed while many others were injured in violent clashes that occurred in Ikare-Akoko in Akoko Northeast Local Government and Ogbese in Akure North Local Government Areas of Ondo State between Tuesday and yesterday. While three persons were killed in the clash that occurred in Ikare Akoko during a youth carnival that turned bloody, one person was reportedly killed in the clash between Hausa and Yoruba communities in Ogbese. In Ikare Akoko, the fragile peace was truncated between Tuesday and the early hours of yesterday as residents were running and crying for safety of their lives during the violent clash between two warring factions in the town. Sources said there was pande monium and commotion in the ancient town with sporadic shooting of guns and the use of other dangerous weapons between the warring sides.
One of the sources said three persons were killed during the exchange of gun fire. Sources said the latest bloody crisis was an attempt by a group of youths to stage a New Year Carnival at Okoja area which attracted resistance from an opposing section of the community. He said the situation escalated into a free-for-all. He said the clash may not be unconnected with the power tussle between the Olukare of Ikare, Oba Akadiri Saliu Momoh and Chief Idowu Ogunye, Olokoja of Okoja, Ikare-Akoko, Ondo State. He said “The Olokoja asked the youths not to organise carnival in his area. Another Chief in Okoja had organised the carnival, but Ogunye insisted it would not hold because the Chief is loyal to Owa- Ale.” He said Ogunye had been dethroned by Olukare for absenteeism, disloyalty and refusal to obey directive of the monarch.
He said the Ikare monarch relieved the appointment of Ogunye with effect from January 20, 2021 and cautioned him to stop parading himself as Olokoja of Okoja. But Ogunye who is loyal to rival Owa-Ale through his lawyer, Femi Emodamori, insisted that he remained the Olokoja of Okoja and described his suspension and purported expulsion as illegal and strange to the tradition of Ikare Akoko. Ogunye had stated that he was one of the kingmakers that participated in the selection of the new Owa-Ale of Ikare Akoko even though he had been purportedly suspended since 2018 by Oba Momoh.