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Travellers were on Tuesday stranded along the Akure-Benin Road, following the protest by residents of Owan community in Ovia North East Local Government Area. The residents protested the shooting of two community members by suspected herdsmen.

The gunmen were said to have attacked the farmers in their farms and opened fire on them, killing them on the spot.

One of the bodies sighted by this reporter had food in his mouth with his lifeless body laid on a wooden bench as the protesters barricaded the expressway.

One of the protesters, who identified himself as Edeki, said the farmer was killed by the herdsmen without any provocation, as he was eating in his farm when he was shot dead.

He said in expressing their anger, the protesters pulled logs of wood and benches across the road, barring travellers from continuing their journey.

The barricade could not be removed by a team of soldiers who first arrived at the scene. They attempted to forcefully clear the way, but the unarmed youth prevented them.

Even with gunshots from the soldiers, the protesters stood their ground and resisted any attempt to clear the way.

While some passengers had to cross to the other side to continue their journeys with other vehicles, some drivers had to turn back to seek alternative routes.

PREMIUM TIMES gathered that only three weeks ago, Owan community suffered a similar fate as suspected herders killed a farmer and a police officer.

The police officer, along with other members of the police force, had been invited to help retrieve the body of the deceased farmer, when the gunmen opened fire and killed the police inspector in the process.

After that incident, travellers were victims of the anger of the residents of the community who also closed the expressway to vent their displeasure.

Although the police were informed about the development on Tuesday, they however, did not show up. Residents feared that the police might have refused to come because of what happened three weeks ago.

Efforts to get the Police Public Relations Officer, Chidi Nwabuzor, to comment on the development did not yield.

His phone rang out several times, but he did not pick his calls.


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