Women from Ossissa community in the Ndokwa-East Local Government Area of Delta State on Monday blocked the Ughelli-Asaba Expressway for about seven hours to protest alleged incessant harassment by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
The Secretary to the Delta State Government, Mr. Festus Agas, and his aides, who were returning to Asaba, were held for hours. A police van had to rescue him, leaving his convoy behind.
The SSG’s convoy and other motorists were later freed by security operatives headed by a deputy commissioner of police. They appealed to the women and promised to address their complaints.
The protest, which started at about 5.30am on Monday, disrupted socio-economic activities for hours.
The Punch had reported that suspected herdsmen invaded the agrarian community on Saturday, injuring one person.
Two of the herdsmen, who invaded the community, were nabbed by officers from the Ashaka Police Station.
Our correspondent gathered that on Sunday evening, the herdsmen allegedly struck again, killing three persons.
The protesters demanded that the Fulani herdsmen should vacate their land and that the killers be prosecuted.
One of the protesters, Mrs. Grace Oliseyeun, said, “The herdsmen have invaded our community and have been constantly harassing the women and youths and now, we can no longer go to our farms for fear of being attacked. They have been very hostile and the life of everyone is in danger.”
A youth leader in Ossissa clan, Chris Ebisue, said, “For the past three days, they have been terrorising us and before yesterday, they killed one young man on his way from his farm. They have been attacking our people and denying them access to their farms.
“They threaten our women and they no longer go to their farms for fear of being raped. They came to the centre of our town the day before yesterday, issuing threats to our people.”