ABOUT 22 hectares of farmland have been set ablaze by a suspected herdsman identified as Hammed Gaa-Alakuko.
ROYAL NEWS gathered that the farmland belongs to Lehin Investment Farms at Idofian/Igberiin in the Ifelodun Local Government Area of Kwara State.
The Farm Consultant, Lehin Investment Farms, Mr. Daramola Josiah who conducted journalists round the burnt farm said the company had lost about N20m to the disaster.
Josiah also said it had inhibited the efforts of the company to increase food production in Kwara State and Nigeria.
He accused Hammed, who was a former employee of the company of igniting the fire stressing that Hammed had been on the run since after allegedly setting fire on the farm.
According to him, “More than 20 hectares of cassava land were completely burnt. The rice farm was also affected. We have not harvested our rice. About 2 hectares of rice were burnt. 22 hectares of farm were burnt. The total hectares of the farm is about 50.
“In terms of loss, we lost about N20m, the cassava that was burnt can not resuscitate itself again.
“The rice farm that is due for harvesting, nothing can be done to it again. It can not be recovered again. We lost some economic trees like cashew trees, the impact and
effects of fire in the soil has destroyed nutrients. I am a professional valuer, but as an investor, looking at what I have put in and what I am expected to have during harvest we lost over N 20 million. I wanted to harvest the cassava by July this year.
“There is one Fulani man called Hameed who lives within this area, we suspect he is the one. We have invited the police and police keep on going to his house since Monday, he has been on the run. This fire did not come from any of the surrounding bush. They ignited the fire.
“The Fulani is a herdsman. He caused the problem. We once employed him as our security man to control other Fulani within the environment. We discovered that he wwas not honest enough, we had to lay him off.That is our believe that made him to burn the far. We were in his
house sometime last week he was threatening that he will cause problem in the farm. We were in his family and we warned him that he should not cause problem in the farm.
Since this Monday, he has been at large. He started working with March last year. I disengaged him November ending last year.”
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