The cause of the fracas in Abbattior/Kara, Agege, was the alleged robbery of some Hausa men by some Fulani boys at a hotel in Kogiri.
Police confirmed the clash but said only one person died in the violence that lasted for many hours.
The area was tension-soaked in spite of the heavy security presence and the deployment of an Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) by the Rapid Response Squad (RRS). There were many accounts of the incident as recounted by those who claimed to have knowledge of it.
A trader who gave his name as Usman said the Hausa boys complained to their brothers and a complaint was filed before the Seriki Fulani, Bello Damobapa, who allegedly took no action to sanction the boys.
Angered by the alleged silence of the Seriki, the Hausa boys were said to have stormed his palace on Tuesday night and vandalised three Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) belonging to him, his deputy and secretary.
By yesterday morning, it was learnt that a crowd of Fulani boys armed with sticks, bottles and cutlasses trooped to the railway lines where Hausa scraps collectors operate and started attacking people.
Usman said: “I usually sleep here but last night something just made me go home and I did. So I came out here around 7am and one woman told me to go back that Hausa and Fulani men were fighting.
“But I crossed to the other side and I saw a large number of Fulani people. They were carrying sticks with which they rear cattle, cutlasses and bottles. They were marching down, attacking anyone in sight
“The retreating Hausa men regrouped and confronted the Fulani group. The Hausa group called their kins from other markets for reinforcement. They came from Katangura, Agege and other markets. They chased the Fulani back into the abattoir complex.
“By that time, the police and soldiers had not come. When they chased the Fulani people back, the Fulani went into the market and started attacking anyone they saw. They attacked even people who are not Hausa.
Police spokesman Dolapo Badmos, a Superintendent (SP) said four persons had been arrested. She said the fight erupted following the assault of a Hausa girl by a Fulani man.
“The command’s operatives from Area G, RRS, and Abattoir Division moved in to quell the crisis. Normalcy was restored. Police Commissioner Fatai Owoseni has directed that a peace parley be held with leaders of both groups. We shall also intensify the patrol of the area.
“Value of properties destroyed are yet unknown, one person died, four suspects were arrested,” she said.