Six people were feared dead and seven missing after members of the Odu’a Peoples Congress (OPC) and Fulani cow sellers clashed at the Kara market in Ajasse Ipo, Kwara State.
The clash, which erupted due to a broken side mirror of one of the OPC members’ vehicle also left 17 persons injured and the market deserted.
The Kara market is usually busy every five days, mainly for cow buyers across Kwara state.
On Friday, one of the market days, the influx of buyers led to a traffic congestion.
According to the Seriki of the market, the side mirror of one of the vehicles of the OPC members, who were returning from the just concluded Osun-Osogbo river festival was broken either by a drunken commercial motorcyclist or a buyer transporting a cow.
An official of the Miyetti Allah association said six corpses had been recovered, seven missing and 17 others receiving treatment for various degree of injuries.
The police in a statement confirmed the incident but said only four persons died.
In a statement signed by spokesperson Ajayi Okasanmi, the police said normalcy has been restored to the area.
Normalcy is said to have returned to Kara market in Ajase-Ipo in Kwara State after a clash between members of the Odua Peoples Congress (OPC) and cow dealers left four people dead on Friday.
The clash led to the disruption of traffic along the Ilorin Ajase-Ipo/Offa Road.
In a statement confirming the incident, Okasanmi Ajayi, Police Public Relations Officer(PPRO) of the
Kwara State Police Command stated that the “Kwara State Police Command wishes to inform the good people of Kwara State, especially people traversing along Ilorin Ajase-Ipo/Offa road, that normalcy has been restored and the road cleared of every barrier created as a result of the misunderstanding between some people suspected to be members of OPC and cow dealers in Kara market of Ajase-Ipo which happened today 12/8/2022 at 1830hrs.”
Explaining the cause of the clash, the PPRO said, “Information received by Ajase-Ipo Divisional Police headquarters was to the effect that some OPC members in a convoy of about twenty vehicles, believed to have been coming from Oshogbo, Osun state, were passing through the Kara market where a cow being led across the road by its handler broke the side mirror of one of the OPC vehicles, which resulted in an argument that eventually escalated into an exchange of gunfire by both the OPC members and the cow dealers in the market. Four lifeless bodies of unidentified people were recovered at the scene.
“The immediate deployment of detachments of policemen and teams of conventional policemen to the scene by the Commissioner of Police, Kwara State Police Command, CP Tuesday Assayomo prevented the escalation and killing of more people.
“Meanwhile, the four unidentified dead bodies have been evacuated from the scene and deposited at the UITH mortuary, the injured have been taken to the hospital in Ajase-Ipo for medical treatment; and policemen have been stationed at the scene to prevent further breakdown of law and order.
“The Ajase Ipo Offa Road is now clear for the movement of goods and services. Therefore anybody who still goes there to cause lawlessness would be arrested and charged to court.
“The CP therefore advises that law abiding citizens in the area and commuters should go about their lawful businesses without any fear of attack or harassment.”