Herdsmen did not attack Soyinka in Abeokuta, says ex-minister

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Former Minister of Defence, Dr Olu Agunloye, has refuted a report making the rounds in cyberspace that the Nobel Laureate, Prof.Wole Soyinka’s residence was invaded by herdsmen on Tuesday.
Agunloye noted that though herdsmen guided their cattle to the unfenced compound of the playwright on Tuesday, after several warnings against such act, they never attempted to attack him. He said,  “The trending story that herdsmen went to attack Prof Wole Soyinka in his house in Abeokuta is not true. Herdsmen did not break into his house. There were no attacks and no attempts to attack the Nobel Laureate.” Explaining what transpired between the Professor of Comparative Literature and the herdsmen on Tuesday Agunloye added that “What happened was that herdsmen led their cattle to graze in Prof. Soyinka’s unfenced compound again yesterday despite his strong warnings to the herdsmen. “Prof Soyinka has been living in the forest at the outskirt of Abeokuta in Area designated as GRA since late 1980s. However, in recent times cattle herders have desecrated the grounds of Professor Soyinka’s compound by flooding it with cows. The Professor summoned the herdsmen and sternly warned them to stop the ugly practice. He told them in very clear terms that it was unacceptable. “However, the herdsmen broke the rules yesterday thinking that Prof Soyinka was not home. When the Prof accosted them, they fled into the bush leaving their cows behind. Prof Soyinka reported the incident to the Police which later arrested the herdsmen and their cows.” Agunloye, a pioneer corps marshal when Soyinka presided over the FRSC,  assured the public that the octogenarian and his household were not physically attacked and they are fine. “We can say categorically that Prof Soyinka and his house were not physically attacked but his compound was violated by recalcitrant herdsmen who wanted to turn his compound to a grazing field. Prof Soyinka and his family remain okay in their Abeokuta home.” Agunloye concluded.

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