Two killed as Hausa traders clash with youths in Rivers
•Christians, Muslims support anti-grazing law in Benue
Two persons were feared dead yesterday, following a clash between Hausa traders and some youths in Eleme Local Council Area of Rivers State.The fight reportedly broke out when the youths demanded the payment of dues from the Hausa traders at Opaku Park in Onne.
According to an eyewitness, Mr. Franklin Bobmanuel, the fight that followed led to the death of the two persons and the burning of a Mosque and a Church.The state Police Public Relations Officer, Nnamdi Omoni, confirmed the incident.
He said: “We are aware of the matter, though I am yet to get the full details. Our men have been deployed in the area to maintain law and order, while we investigate the matter.”
Meanwhile, Christians and Muslims in Benue State yesterday staged a solidarity march in support of the recently passed anti-grazing law.The state Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Augustine Akpen Leva told newsmen in Makurdi that the march was also to condemn cattle breeders’ opposition to the law.
This followed the recent protest against the law by members of the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore (MAKH), led by its President, Abdullahi Bello and Secretary, Saleh Alhassan.
Leva said the cattle breeders’ position on the law was wicked, obnoxious and repressive.The enactment of the law followed all due procedures and everybody, including the Fulani herdsmen had an ample opportunity to make their contributions to it.”
According to him, unless this was done, the Federal Government would be blamed for any break down of law and order in the state.Also, the Chief Imam of Gboko Mosque, Bala Ibrahim said the Muslims aligned with the CAN in condemnation of MAKH’s position.
The state governor, Samuel Ortom commended them for the peaceful procession, adding that there was no reason for anyone to protest against a law that was duly passed.He said the Fulani herdsmen were free to rear their cattle in the state, adding that after November, no open grazing would be tolerated.