At least six people were killed and property valued at millions of naira was destroyed in a communal clash that broke out in Ondo State between two rival groups in Igbokoda, the headquarters of the Ilaje Local Government Area.
The fracas occurred on Monday, June 2, 2015 and was between supporters of the Olu of Igbokoda, Oba Afolabi Odidiomo, and loyalists of a group led by a Tale Iwatan.
The Oba Odidiomo, on Wednesday, June 3, told the Punch that alleged that the Tale Group led by the said Iwatan had become a terror gang in the community. He called on the state government and security agencies to stop the activities of the gang.
According to him, those that died in the attack were Deji Enikanologbon, Ireayo Nana, and three other friends of one Banji Orofin who was also allegedly kidnapped and killed by Tale group.
The monarch explained that the group had allegedly killed and raped many women in the town while houses of those who challenged the group had been burnt.
He said that the crisis began on Monday after the abduction of Banji Orofin who was taken to a forest known as ‘ Tale Sambisa Forest ‘, after which a search party with police support went to rescue him.
He said, “Because we know what this group can do, we sent a car to take the people from the forest but they were ambushed by the Tale boys who set them ablaze together with the jeep.”
He alleged that the group was being sponsored by some leaders within the area.
“I want to appeal to the godfathers of these boys to stop fuelling crisis in the area. I know a 33-year-old boy cannot have money to buy and keep such a large armory and sophisticated weapons,” the traditional said .
However, the Tale group alleged that the violence was the fault of the monarch.
They claimed that the monarch had sent hoodlums to the Iwatan family house with guns and other dangerous weapons. They added that the hoodlums allegedly set two houses belonging to the Iwatan’s family ablaze, when they could not abduct Tale Iwatan.
A lawyer of the Tale Group, Mr. Koboju Atima, speaking on behalf of the family, said two vehicles belonging to the Iwatan family members were burnt by the group loyal to the Oba.