Two feared dead, palace razed in Ondo over land dispute
Pandemonium was let loose yesterday between Ude and Isinigbo communities in Akure North local government area of Ondo State over land dispute, leading to the death of two persons and burning of the palace of the traditional ruler of Ude, Sunday Boboye, in protest.
The Guardian learnt that the Ajagun of Ude, Sunday Boboye, had laid claim to a portion of land to the chagrin of Isinigbo people.
Reliable sources alleged that Boboye demolished houses belonging to Isinigbo people, including buildings belonging to non-indigenes. This sparked off the crisis as Isinigbo people bombarded Ude town and laid siege on the palace, destroying valuable properties and setting the palace ablaze.
According to eyewitnesses, bonfires were mounted at the entrances of both communities, while shop owners fled for their lives as angry youths wielded dangerous weapons, chanting songs of protests.
The Oluomo of Isinigbo, Oluwole Kareem, said they had to protest the continued demolition of their buildings by the Ajagun of Ude. Kareem said they were surprised when a land matter the Isinigbo community had won in 2012 was taken to another court by Boboye and judgment was secured to deprive them of the land they had occupied for the past 800 years.
All attempts to reach Boboye were to no avail as he had fled the community to seek asylum in an unknown destination.
The state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Tee-Leo Ikoro, confirmed the arson on the palace, but noted that nobody was killed in the fracas.
Ikoro added that normalcy had been restored to the communities, while the police had begun investigation into the incident.