Chief Olu Falae, a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation has said the constant attack on his farm by suspected herdsmen, is borne out of hatred and malice.
Falae who was speaking when SUNSHINE HERALD paid an assessment tour of his farm which was razed by fire yesterday said it has been the tradition of the herdsmen every year to burn down crops on his farm.
The herdsmen according to him burn his farm to allow for fresh grass to grow which they feed their cattle.
Listen to him:
Arsonists suspected to be Fulani herdsmen had yesterday (Sunday), set on fire, Falae's farm situated at Kajola/Eyin Ala community in Akure North local government area of Ondo state.
When SUNSHINE HERALD visited the scene of the fire, there were visible leftover of the burnt portion of the farm, with some sections yet to go off.
Speaking with SUNSHINE HERALD, one of the workers of the farm who spoke on the condition of anonymity said but for the intervention of workers of the farm, all the oil palm plantation would have been wiped off by the inferno.
He further continued that around July last year, suspected herdsmen who entered the farm through Ogbese destroyed about two and a half hectares of Oil palm plantation, taking the seedlings away.
While taking our reporter round the farm, he also stated that on the 31st of December 2017, a section of the farm where cassava was being planted was burnt while others uprooted and destroyed the remaining ones.
During the visit, fresh cattle hoofs were visible around the farm which was an indication that cattle were regular visitors to the farm.
Speaking on the destruction of his farm, Falae said when the herdsmen were confronted on why they were also leaving the grass to graze on his already cultivated farm, they said, "how can someone leave rice and eat garri." (Equating the grass to garri and the cassava and maize on the farm to rice).
Chief Falae also spoke against the proposed cattle colony by the federal government.
He said: "The word colony is repugnant. One group of human beings dominating and exploiting. The British came to Nigeria and by force colonized us and made us their possession. So a colonial arrangement regards all human beings as the possession of others.
"We thank God we were able to win our independence, therefore I am shocked that a Nigerian, an adult educated Nigerian could use that word colony to describe any part of his county, that he wants to bring back colonial states even to 1 square inch of Nigerian territory.
"It is repugnant, it is provocative, and it should be withdrawn. And the person who said it should apologise to this nation.
"The idea that you train rangers to accompany cows moving from one colony to another is a huge financial burden on the federal government. Because there is no need for cattle to march from colony to colony.
"So if you train rangers, it should be to maintain rural peace generally, not limited to cows that are now being given very special status.
"In our system, cows will now be accompanied like governors or heads of state traveling, cows will now be accompanied by rangers going from colony a to colony be, which they don't have to travel.
"The whole thing makes no sense, they have insulted the intelligence of Nigerians. We can see through the whole noise."