No fewer than three persons were killed, 20 injured on Wednesday, at the Lagos State Abattoir, Agege, as Hausa and Fulani traders clashed. Six vehicles were also vandalised and some cattle were reportedly killed by the warring groups.
Issues started between the two groups after the Nigeria Railway Corporation demolished some shanties and shops erected around the railway line. The structures were reportedly owned by the Hausa, who were majorly scrap collectors.
They were said to have accused the Fulani, who were cattle dealers of being responsible for their ordeal, adding that the Fulani encouraged the government to demolish the structures to facilitate easy rail transport of their cows from the north to the abattoir.
A trader, Jimoh Umoru, said crisis erupted after a Hausa woman was assaulted by a Fulani man, who had bought food from her and refused to pay.
He said, “The Hausa are majorly scrap collectors, and they ply their trade around the railway line where they also built their shanties. On Saturday, the government demolished their shanties and shops and many of them were displaced and lost their means of livelihood. They felt that their Fulani brothers, who deal in cattle, were behind what happened to them. The matter came to a head on Tuesday after a Fulani man bought food from a Hausa woman, and refused to pay. There was argument between them and the man assaulted the girl. That was how the two tribes started fighting each other.
“Around 1am on Wednesday, some of the Fulani youths invaded the apartments of the Hausa and killed some of them. By 5am, the Hausa launched a reprisal and injured many of the Fulani and destroyed their property. The Hausa suffered higher casualties.”
The Punch gathered that some of the victims were taken to the New Merit Hospitals in the Oko-Oba area of Agege.
The Police Public Relations Officer, SP Dolapo Badmos, said one person died in the incident.
She said, “At about 1am today, we received a distress call that there was a serious fight between the Hausa and the Fulani communities in the Abattoir. The report indicated that the crisis started after a young Hausa woman was beaten by a Fulani man. It degenerated into serious fight and subsequent destruction of property. The command’s operatives from Area G, RRS and Abattoir division were moved in to quell the crisis and normalcy has been returned to the area.”