Suspected herders murder cleric inside farm in Edo
The people of Ovia North East council area were at the weekend thrown into a mourning mood, as a pastor cum farmer, Pius Eromosele, was killed by suspected herdsmen in his farm at Odighi community in Edo State.
The deceased’s eldest son, Dr. Richard Eromosele, who confirmed the development, said his father was abducted on Thursday, March 29, 2018 while his corpse was found on Tuesday, April 3.
Reliving the loss of the patriarch of the Eromosele family, he noted: “ Last Thursday, my mother called that she had been calling my father and that he was not picking his phone. She later called back to inform me that my father managed to receive her call and told her that herdsmen had kidnapped him in his farm.
“The herdsmen did not use their phones. They were using my father’s mobile phone and that of one of his workers. They demanded for N4 million but we begged them that it was a holiday and could not raise such money.
“I went to the police and they told me that I should call them whenever the herdsmen called for ransom payment. I did that but there was no response from the police.”
He continued; “The two workers that escaped told us that the herdsmen told my father that he was one of those killing their cattle.
“It was on Tuesday after the police failed to find my father that I begged hunters and vigilantes to help rescue my father. It was during the search that we found my father. His skull was cut out with a cutlass while his hands were also cut.
“We want security agencies to protect farmers in Odighi. My father had farmed in that community all his life. How could I go into farming when my father was killed like a pig.”
The younger Eromosele decried the helplessness of local farmers to access their farms due to attacks by herders, just as he called on government to secure lives and property, noting that government’s diversification effort was unrealistic when the producers of crops feel unsafe.
Until his death, Eromosele was a cleric with the Church of God Mission in Benin City.
According to Richard, another farmer was equally killed in the locality and buried inside the bush.
The distraught medical doctor said two of his father’s workers, Kingsley and Akpan, who escaped narrowly, narrated how his daddy was slaughtered like a pig.
Efforts to get the State Commissioner of Police, Johnson Babatunde Kokumo, for comments were futile as at press time.