A married woman (names withheld) was on Sunday raped by suspected herdsmen at a farm at Ubuneke-Ivbiaro community in Owan East local government area. The woman was said to have been raped after the herdsmen beat up her husband while they were at the farm.
Husband of the raped victim who gave his name as Umoru Agunu said the armed herdsmen that attacked him and raped his wife were six.
According to him, “No sooner had I arrived at my farm with my wife than I saw six armed herdsmen demanding for my phone but when I told them I don’t have any they beat me up mercilessness and took my wife to a distant where she was raped by two of the men. They were also with a young woman who probably is their victim.
A leader in the community, Yakubu Ibrahim, said farmers in the village are living in fear of armed herdsmen who, he stated, have laid siege to the community.
Ibrahim said, “We have been under sieged by the activities of armed men since 2015. They have raped several of our married women, kidnapped and physically assaulted both male and female in the farms and while going and returning from markets.
“Many people have been kidnapped while several people were assaulted. Several millions of Nara have also been paid as ransom. Our people are now living in perpetual fears both in the farm and at home.
“We are agrarian communities known for the production of rice, cassava, cashew, cocoa, plantain, banana, palm oil among others. Since the taking over of the communities by these unknown gunmen it has been very difficult for us to go to farm and markets”, he said
Ibrahim said the Sunday rape incident have been reported to the Divisional Police Officer in Afuze, administrative headquarters of Owan East local government area.
Another community leader, Yusuf Adamu, said some herdsmen who were arrested last year by volunteer vigilante group have been released for lack of evidence.
Head of Owan East Local Government Administration (HOLGA), Akeens Ade-Akhani said the council was aware of the situation in the area.
Akhani said, his administration have been mobilizing men of the Nigeria police as well as vigilantes to Ivbiaro- Auchi road.
He said the security challenges in Ivbiaro, Warrake, Ihievbe and other parts of the local government have been reported to the state government.
“Yes the council is aware of the security situation in Ivbiaro, Warrake and Ihievbe. It is not only peculiar to these areas. Even in Lagos where there is food security management there is kidnapping, raping, stealing among others.
“The council is always mobilizing men of the Nigeria police to Ivbiaro, Warrake and Afuze roads to provide security in those areas. We also empower the council vigilante group with the necessary incentives and manpower to provide security to our people.
“Though I am yet to get the recent attacked on some persons at Ubuneke-Ivbiaro, but the council will not relent in its responsibility to ensure the provision of adequate security across the local government area”, he stated.
Police spokesman, DSP Moses Nkombe, said he was yet to get brief on the incident.