How Fulani herdsmen invaded, destroyed my farm in Osun — Prince Babatunde


How Fulani herdsmen invaded, destroyed my farm in Osun — Prince Babatunde

Prince Oluwalogbon Adeniyi Babatunde is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Hayur Global Resources Limited with subsidiaries like Hayuur Automobiles, Hayur Farms and Agro Allied, Osun State and Hayur Borehole Drilling, Ibadan, Oyo State. He is a graduate of Urban and Regional Planning, Osun State College of Technology, Esa-Oke, Osun State. He holds other five diplomas from five different colleges from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. In this interview, he talks about how he lost millions of Naira to the Fulani herdsmen during the invasion of his farmlands, which was built with state of the art facilities, in Kuta, Osun State.

Talking about the Nigerians in Diaspora investing in Nigeria, which Nigerian government has been clamouring for. What is your stance on this?
It was a journey in futile. I will advice if you are doing well for yourself wherever you are before you make such a move never do it without plan B, C D….

You are once into a farming in Nigeria, how was the experience?
It was a bitter experience.

Are there enabling environments to operate as an entrepreneur?

Hmmmmmmmmm….there is an audio enabling environment. It is only good in the pages of newspapers. It is really affecting many Nigerians abroad psychologically.

Sometimes in 2019, February precisely, Fulani herdsmen attacked your farm in Osun State and set all your investments ablaze. What was your reaction then when it happened?
That was a very bitter experience. In fact I left the farm sometimes around 6:45pm on that horrible day back to my base in Ibadan. That is where I used to come on a daily basis to farm in Kuta. You asked why ? Because I’m very passionate about farming, the following morning, my manager called me around 7am and informed me about the farm been set ablaze without anyone knowing where the fire came from.

Aren’t you report the attack to constituted authority in Nigeria?
I reported and nothing was done about it. In fact the officer in charge said there is no culprit.

What was the response of police and traditional rulers to this?
I reported to my Royal father, the Olowu of Kuta Kingdom but yet nothing was forthcoming.

Now, that you are no more doing farming, what are you now into?
I am now into importation of information technology materials from China to Cote-Divoire courtesy of my dad.

If you were the Nigerian President, with these herdsmen crises, what are the decisive decisions to be taken?
There is a need for a holistic review of our grazing law. I have been into several countries around the globe with my experience open grazing is alien.

Last week, Chief Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, went to Ibarapa to give Fulanis in the areas 7 days ultimatum to vacate the area, according to him, he was shot by these fulanis, which led to burning of their huts. What do you have to say about this?
I once met him in Osogbo few years back, he has been a freedom fighter from time immemorial. Though his steps could set the nation on fire but he took the bull by the horn. That was very timing.

What are your fears/doubts about this nation-state called Nigeria?
As a student of history with my political background, the best gift for every Nigerians right now is to go back to the regional government. Right now the centre can no longer hold.

What is your advice to potential agricultural investors eyeing farming like yours in Nigeria especially South westerners?
My candid advice is for the potential investor to have alternative means so when the non-expected happen there would be something to fall back on.

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