Ife Mayhem: Panel of Inquiry begins sitting

By Nofisat Marindoti, The Nigerian Voice, Osogbo

The panel of inquiry on disturbance of public peace set up by Osun state Governor, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, to unravel the causes of the recent clash between the Hausa and Yoruba community in Ile-Ife, yesterday began its sitting.

The panel which is headed by Justice Moshood Adeigbe, during the sitting at Oba Okunade Sijuade Memorial Hall, Enuwa, Ile-Ife, urged the petitioners to assist the panel in discharging its duty within the stipulated time.

He recalled that the panel was given four weeks to submit its findings to the state government and assured that the panel would be fair to everybody.

Meanwhile, indigenes of Ile-Ife also barricaded the panel yesterday with various affidavits, claiming lose of properties worth millions of naira in the mayhem.

One of the petitioners, Reverend Rotimi Omisakin, told the panel that his church and shop were burnt by unknown Hausa boys and said he would need N150,000 to repair the church.

"I was on the prayer mountain when my wife called me that some Hausa boys came to our house and burnt her shop and church.

"I want to appeal to the government to give me N150,000 which I need to repair my church."

Also, one Rotimi Fabunmi, who claimed to represent his stepmother, alleged that properties worth N480,000 were burnt in his stepmother's shop.

When asked why his stepmother did not appear before the panel herself, Fabunmi said she was rushed out of the country due to the shock she had when she heard that her shops were burnt.

He said kolanut and palm oil that worth N480,000 were burnt by the unidentified hoodlums during the crisis.

The Secretary of the panel, Bisi Babalola also disclosed that 140 memoranda have been received by the commission.

He said the panel would be sitting everyday so as to meet up with the four weeks deadline given to it by the governor.