Ife Crisis: Osun panel of enquiry visits Sabo

By Nofisat Marindoti, The Nigerian Voice, Osogbo

The panel of enquiry set up by the Osun state government to investigate the immediate causes of the recent bloody clash between the Yoruba and Hausa community on Thursday visited the scenes of the mayhem.

The commission of enquiry led by a serving judge in the state, Justice Mashood Ajeigbe also paid a courtesy visit to the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi who asked the panel to be neutral in carrying out its investigations as regard the crisis.

Oba Ogunwusi who expressed his happiness at the manner the state Governor Rauf Aregbesola rose to the violence, said prompt intervention by the state government assisted in quelling the crisis.

He charged the panel to maintain balance and ensure that it is not bias in its investigative activities.

The monarch explained why he left the town few days after the crisis broke, saying he had to attend an important event that concerns the unity and progress of the Yoruba race.

He said he was able to meet prominent northern traditional rulers like the Sultan of Sokoto and Emir of Kano and they both assured him that there would not be any form of reprisal attacks in any part of the northern part of the country.

Addressing the panel of enquiry, Oba Ogunwusi said, "I appreciate the chief security officer of the state. I am very honoured, delighted and happy for his response to the crisis. The Governor has been here twice and did the needful. I traveled some days after the incident and I took permission from him because what I went for was for the rich culture and peace of the Yoruba race.

"The Governor simply told me to go ahead with the event and he took charge as the governor and the chief security officer. I met sultan of sokoto, Emir of Kano at the event and other top northern monarchs and we had a very important discussion so that there won't be a reprisal of the attack.

"The work continued when I left ife. So far so good, we have not seen reprisal attack and we pray it will never happen. It's very unfortunate that the violence happened and we want to urge the panel of enquiry to be very neutral.

"My prayers are with you. On behalf of Ooni in council and tradition chiefs, please be neutral so as to get to the bottom of what triggerered this unfortunate occurrence. We do not pray for such a thing to happen again. It happened at the very centre of the Yoruba race.

Meanwhile, Justice Ajeigbe said the commission's sittings would hold at the Oba Okunade Sijuade Memorial Hall at Ereja Square in Ife in order to pave way for easy assess to the witnesses and victims of the clash that claimed several lives and led to destruction of properties."I got phone calls from every part of the world and many leaders in this country called me. Thank God the Governor intervened very promptly. May God not let us experience such a sad occurrence anywhere in the country again."

Among the panel of enquiry are the Police, the Department of State Security (DSS) and some other relevant institutions.