By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan.
Arewa leaders from the six South West States of Oyo, Osun, Ekiti, Ondo, Ogun and Lagos, on Thursday met in Ibadan with a call for a ceasefire at all fronts on the last week clash between the Hausas and Yorubas in Ile Ife.
At the emergency peace meeting conveyed by the Sarkin Shasha and Head of the Arewa Communities in the 17 Southern States, Alhaji (Dr.) Haruna Maiyasin, the Arewa leaders condoled with victims of the inter-tribal clash at Ile-Ife which they described as unfortunate.
They stressed that “intruders under any guise should not” be allowed to destroy the age-long relationship between the Hausa and Yoruba in Yorubaland.
The Arewa leaders tasked the Osun state government to set up harmonization committees to interface between the Hausa and the host communities to ensure harmonious relationship and enduring peace and also mitigate the losses of the victims.
The meeting also urged all those affected by the crisis “to accept all that had happened in good faith and as a wish of Allah”.
Speaking at the meeting which lasted four hours, the Sarkin Shasha, asked the delegates to go back to their respective states and ensure the establishment of inter-ethnic Peace Forums where harmonious relationship with the host states would be the topmost on the agenda.
The Senior Special Adviser to Governor Rauf Aregbesola on Arewa Matters, Alhaji Bashir Husein while speaking at the meeting said Osun state government will ensure that perpetrators of the crisis are brought to book and would not go unpunished.
According to him Governor Aregbesola has “set up a Committee to investigate the whole issue and justice would be carried out to the letter’’.
He stressed that Yoruba had no cause to attack their Northern brothers at any time, saying, even the Ife-Modakeke crisis that lasted a few years,‘’had no record of a single Hausa casualty either by mistake or intentionally as the Yoruba had no cause to attack their Northern brothers, then and even now’’.
Addressing the Arewa leaders, the Olowu of Kuta, Oba Oyelude who stood in for Yoruba monarchs at the meeting said the Ile-Ife crisis was unfortunate, saying,the Hausa and Yoruba in the South West had decades of peaceful coexistence which had even resulted in inter marriages as well as cultural and religious assimilation.
The meeting was attended by over 50 Sarkin Hausawa from across the six South West States.