Calm is gradually returning to Shasha community in Akinyele Local Government Area of Oyo State following the town hall meeting held on Tuesday between governors Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Sani Bello of Niger State, Bello Matawalle of Zamfara, Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi and Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State, with the Hausa/Yoruba community in Shasha.
At the town hall meeting that was held at the residence of the Baale of Shasha, the cause of the clash was reviewed. It was stated that the origin of the crisis which escalated on Friday leaving casualties and destruction in its trail on both sides was traceable to lack of mutual understanding.
The governors, who noted that the two ethnic groups, Hausa and Yoruba had co-existed for many years without having very serious crisis, linked the violence to lack of understanding.
Governor Makinde reminded the gathering that the two ethnic groups had fused together by social and economic reasons said l, “Our people have inter-married.”
Although he did not mention names, he apparently made reference to the classic marriage between the children of late Senator Abiola Ajimobi and Governor Ganduje, saying it is more rewarding to live in peace and harmony than to relate as enemies.
Bagudu, who lamented the sad incident between the Hausa and Yoruba groups, however promised that the northern governor’s would give necessary support to Governor Makinde in restoring normalcy and redeeming the lost property.
Meanwhile, Governor Makinde has listed conditions to reopen the Shasha market which was shut down since last Friday when the Yoruba and Hausa communities clashed.
He said, “The northern governors just finished a meeting with the Seriki of Shasha and the Baale of Shasha. As a government you trust and elected into office, please trust our judgement to watch out for you and ensure that we co-exist peacefully.
“There is nothing we can do in an atmosphere of unrest and disharmony. Those who go to Iroko to continue trading, I will lock up the place. When you are all ready to cooperate, you will come to me. When you have agreed that there won’t be any more bloodshed here, you will come to me and then I will reopen the market. I beg you. We won’t lose any more lives.”
Speaking on behalf of the northern delegation, Kebbi State governor said his Oyo State counterpart had shown leadership to restore normalcy in the area.
Bagudu, who condemned the attacks, said, “The market has been closed down and there are many people whose livelihood are being affected. The Nigeria Governors’ Forum will also support him (Makinde) to ensure that those who have lost their livelihood are supported in this trying period.”
After the governors visit to the community on Tuesday, some of the people went back to the market to pick some up some items from the debris in their razed shops.
Security operatives were on patrol to ensure that the fledgling peace in the community does not suffer any setback. However, scavengers were seen feasting on some of the items in the market like partially burnt onions, corrugated iron sheets and more.
The people expressed the hope that the state government would be proactive in its efforts to rebuild the market in order for them to return to their businesses and have their normal lives again.