Governors from four Northern states, on Monday evening, visited Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, in Ibadan, over the recent clash between Yoruba and Hausa traders at Shasha market in Ibadan.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the visiting governors were Abubakar Bagudu of Kebbi State; Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State; Abubakar Bello of Niger State and Bello Matawalle of Zamfara State.
The governors’ arrived at the Oyo State Government House, Agodi, Ibadan, at exactly 7. am and went into a closed door meeting with Governor Makinde.
Emerging out of the closed door meeting, Governor Bagudu said they were in the state to assess the situation and seek audience with Governor Makinde.
The governor hailed Mr Makinde for his quick intervention, stressing that only criminals cash in on issues that touch on ethnic sentiments to foment trouble.
He said: “This delegation is from the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF). Many others would have joined but they felt we were adequate to represent them.
“On their behalf we commiserate with the government and people of Oyo State on the tragic incident that happened, which regrettably consumed lives and properties. We express our sympathies.
“We arrived yesterday. We got a view of what happened. We were in touch with Governor Makinde all along. Everyone has been concerned about what happened and have been calling.
“We appreciate the governor in restoring peace to prevent retaliation elsewhere. The move has helped to contain the situation.
“From what we gathered we saw that there is an underlying issue about who controls the market. Such issues are best appreciated by participants.
“Whenever there is an issue, reckless people take advantage of it to wreak violence and steal and kill. They are all over the place.
“Many Governors of cosmopolitan cities have been working hard in their states to prevent retaliation. We have seen such in the #EndSARS protests.
“Before now we were in Akure. Governor Makinde was firm in stressing that nobody has the right to send anyone away from where they choose to live.
“We once more call upon our youths in particular and social media users that we have no other country than Nigeria.
“Historically, Hausa actually predates Ibadan itself. Many academics have produced Master’s and doctoral thesis on this part of history.
“We have lived together for so long as brothers and sister. We must come together and resist those who want to wreck people’s lives and destroy their means of livelihood.
“What we saw in town shows that people have moved on. We saw people at Bodija Market. When we stopped and interacted with them, one said he is from Sokoto, one from Kano and another from Kebbi states.
“Ibadan has played host to several people from across Nigeria. So, let’s all be united against aggressive elements and mobilise to defeat them.
“We have seen the extent of destruction. We can do better together.