Gov’t urged to avert bloodshed over Wuli rice fields

Monday, March 12, 2018

Inhabitants of Nyakoi Madina Koto village in the Wulli West District of the Upper River Region (URR) threatened that there would be bloodshed if government fails to act over disputed rice fields with Taibatou village.

The first dispute over the said rice fields arose between the two villages in 1977, but was settled by the then Chief Muhammed Krubally who demarcated a boundary for the field. This time, both village called for government’s intervention, warning there will be possible bloodshed if government don’t act to arrest the situation.

Kebba Sissoho, the then clerk of the four chiefs in the URR, recalled the 1977 dispute between the two villages, saying there was no judgment between the two villages. He said that the matter was presided over by the chief of Fulladou Muhammed Krubally, and attended by the chief of Wulli, Foday Kebba Jatta, the chief of Kantora, Muhammed Sanyang, and the chief of Sandu, Saikou Drammeh among other elders.

“The chief of Fulladou told the people of Nayakoi Madina that; “you cannot welcome a stranger and say you will not give him a land,” he said. He added that the stream was taken for a boundary because it will never move.

According to him, the chief demarcated that the left side of the rice field starting from the stream be Nyakoi’s while the right side belongs to Taibatou. 

Recently, a fresh dispute has emerged with Nyakoi Madina Koto calming ownership over the entire rice field. According to sources, the people of Madina Koto, after having ‘Junfara’ rice fields under their custody are equally reclaiming ‘Andiyerr’ rice fields which are under the custody of Taibatou village 

Our reporter who went to the two villages said there could be possible blooded if government fails to act.

“We are urging the government to do everything possible to making sure that this matter is clear in ensuring that the rice field problem is solved,” said Yerr a Camara, a village elder from Madina Koto.

He said they are not interested about the area that their forefathers have given out but their rice field.

He argued that the entire villages in Wulli West know that they settled first before Taibatou.

“The government should come and settle the problem or else we are ready to die. In fact now, if our children are going to school they are being harassed by the people of Taibatou,” he said. “We are ready to take a step. If the government doesn’t take a step, what we will do; the entire country will not like it.”

The village Alkalo Lankurang Camara, said Nyakoi Madina Koto is one of the oldest villages in Wulli West District, adding that they settled before Taibatou. He accused Taibatou village of creating problem between the two villages.

Mr. Camara, 95, said the then chief of Fulladou District, Muahammed Krubally, came to their parents in 1977 and appealed for them to help Taibatou with some lands. “Initially, we did not agree to the chief’s request. However, the government urged us to help them for the fact that we welcomed them as strangers.”

Author: Momodou Jawo just back from Wulli
Source: Picture: Alkali Mbemba Jabbie