Yoruba Nation Ambition Can Be Achieved Without Firing A Bullet, Says Igboho

Yoruba Nation activist, Mr Sunday Adeyemo (middle) with other Yoruba leaders after his release from custody on Monday, March 7, 2022.

 

Yoruba Nation activist, Sunday Adeyemo, better known as Igboho, has called for dialogue in the quest for self-determination, maintaining that it can be achieved without bloodshed.

Igboho said this in a statement issued on Thursday by his counsel, Yomi Alliyu, in which he sued for calm among his supporters.

“He continues to preach against war seeing what is happening in Ukraine and some parts of Igboland in Nigeria. He implored all, especially his kinsmen at home and in the diaspora, to embrace dialogue in their quest for self-determination without heating up the very fragile situation in Nigeria,” the statement read.

“He believes that their ambition will be achieved without firing a bullet as he used to say at rallies.”

READ ALSO: Sunday Igboho Released From Custody In Benin Republic

Mr Sunday Adeyemi Igboho addressed reporters on January 26, 2021.
Igboho had risen to fame following his quit notice to criminal herders in Oyo State.

 

His counsel further quoted him as saying that he would not relent in the push for self-determination and thanked those who supported him while he was in prison.

The statement said: “Sunday Adeyemo a.k.a Igboho Oosa thanked all that are supporting him, especially his leaders, Baba Prof Akintoye and Baba Prof. Wale Adeniran and all Nigerians especially his people in Ilana Oodua and Affiliates seeking self-determination.

“He appreciates Chief Dele Momodu being the only Yorubaman of note that came to visit him in Cotonou prison. He remains grateful to the President of the Republic of Benin, President Talon, for releasing him from prison with a view to uniting him with members of his immediate family, albeit only in Cotonou for the time being,” it added.

The statement is the most recent from Igboho since he was freed by Benin Republic authorities on Monday.

Although details of his movement were sketchy in the wake of the development, reports suggest that he will stay in the Benin Republic. Before his arrest after attempting to move to Germany, Igboho was declared wanted by the Department of State Services (DSS) following a raid of his home in Oyo State in July.

Some of his aides are facing trial in Nigeria.

Sunday Igboho Released From Custody In Benin Republic

Yoruba Nation activist, Mr Sunday Adeyemo (middle) with other Yoruba leaders after his release from custody on Monday, March 7, 2022.

 

The embattled Yoruba Nation activist, Mr Sunday Adeyemo, has been released by the Benin Republic Government.

The activist, who is fondly called Sunday Ighoho, was released on Monday to the leader of the umbrella body of Yoruba Self-determination Groups, Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Professor Banji Akintoye, and his deputy, a French Language Expert and Chieftain of Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Professor Wale Adeniran.

READ ALSO: Abba Kyari Remanded In NDLEA Custody As Judge Postpones Bail Hearing

In a statement issued by the Communications Secretary to Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide, Mr. Maxwell Adeleye, Akintoye described Igboho’s release as a “Triumph of Truth over Darkness in Yoruba Land.”

Details of Igboho’s movement are still sketchy and it remains unclear if the activist, who has been incarcerated since July 2021, will be returning to Nigeria.

Igboho was arrested in the Benin Republic on his way to Germany alongside his wife who was released shortly after. They left Nigeria after operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) raided their Ibadan residence on July 1, 2021.

Interpreter’s Absence Stalls Arraignment Of Igboho Aides

Igboho aides
The aides were arrested during a raid earlier in the year.

 

The arraignment of two aides of Yoruba Nation agitator Sunday Adeyemo popularly called Sunday Igboho could not hold following the absence of an interpreter. 

The Federal Government through the Department of State Service is prosecuting the aides – Jamiu Oyetunji and Amudat Babatunde –  on a 5-count terrorism charge.

According to the FG, the defendants were involved in acts of terrorism and were found in possession of prohibited firearms.

When the matter came up on Monday, counsel to the defendants Pelumi Olajengbensi, told the court that his clients do not understand English and they needed an interpreter.

READ ALSO: FG Optimistic Of Declaring Nigeria Open Defecation Free By 2022

Efforts by the court to get an interpreter proved futile, a situation that forced the trial Judge Justice Obiorah Evwuatu to adjourn to January 24, 2022, for arraignment.

Babatunde Amudat and Jamiu Oyetunji were arrested in a joint operation carried out by the DSS and the Nigeria Army on 2nd July at the residence of Sunday Igboho.

Monday’s arraignment comes a few weeks after the two aides were released by the DSS.

Initially, the DSS had apprehended 12 persons linked to Igboho; however, after a brief legal tussle in August, the DSS released 10 of the aides in September.

The remaining two were held back for a few more weeks and were finally let go in October.

However, the DSS was not satisfied with the ruling of Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court in Abuja on August 4, ordering to release all 12 detained associates of Igboho, and as such, the agency went ahead to slam a five-count terrorism charge against the last two aides.

Igboho Aides: Robbers Stole Our Case File – DSS Lawyer

A file photo of a court gavel.
A file photo of a court gavel.

 

The Counsel for the Department of State Service (DSS), Idowu Awo, has told the Federal High Court that the case file relating to the Fundamental Human Rights Enforcement application filed by the aides to Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, was stolen by armed robbers.

Mr Awo on Wednesday told Justice Obiora Egwuatu that his colleague who was bringing the case file to court had boarded a vehicle belonging to armed robbers commonly known as ‘one chance,’ and they took all valuables including the documents.

Leaning on this premise, the counsel sought an adjournment of the case.

Read Also: Igboho’s Aides Sue DSS, Seek N100m As Compensation

A ₦100 Million Case

Awo’s plea today came after the 12 associates of pro-Yoruba agitator Sunday Adeyemo also known as Sunday Igboho, instituted a rights enforcement suit against the DSS for being paraded on the media as common criminals.

The suit by Igboho’s associates sought a declaration of court that their detention beyond 48 hours and their media parade without a court conviction constituted a breach on their fundamental rights.

All 12 applicants have also sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the DSS from interfering with their personal liberty and freedom of expression.

They also prayed for an order granting the sum of 100 million for aggravated and exemplary damages against the DSS for what they term a serial breach of their constitutional rights.

After hearing all sides, Justice Egwuatu ruled that the file of the fundamental rights suit before the court be returned to the registry for reassignment to the regular court.

This, according to the judge, was predicated upon the fact that the annual recess of the High Court is now drawing to a close.

Court Hears Bail Application By Igboho’s Aides

Logo of a court gavel

 

A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja is hearing the bail application by the 12 aides of Sunday Adeyemo also known as Sunday Igboho.

Igboho’s aides have been in the custody of the Department of the State Service since July 1, 2021.

On Monday, 2nd August, the Service only produced eight of Igboho’s aides at the court, an action the presiding Judge, Obiora Egwuata frowned at.

At the resumed trial on Wednesday, the application for the court to grant bail to all the 12 applicants came up.

However, Counsel to the respondent (DSS), David Awo opposed the bail application to four of the applicants, citing the high level of their involvement in the matter as a reason.

Mr Awo said the DSS was not in opposition to the application for bail to be granted to the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, and 11th applicants because so far investigation conducted by the respondent reveals that the level of their involvement in the offence of arms stockpiling and other criminal activities are minimal.

He said the DSS however opposed the bail of the other 4 applicants (2nd, 12th, 6th and 5th) because investigation so dar on them has revealed a high level of complicity on their part.

Awo argued that granting bail to the four applicants would not be in the interest of justice and national security.

He noted that the DSS is afraid that if granted bail, the four isolated applicants would not make themselves available for further investigation and possible prosecution.

According to Mr David, although it was at the discretion of the court to grant bail to the applicants, there are various reasons that the court could consider and refuse them bail, one of which is the nature of the offence they are accused of as contained in Paragraph 5 of the affidavit submitted by the DSS.

He said on 1st July 2021 when a joint raid involving the DSS, the military and other security agencies was carried out on the residence of Sunday Igboho, seven Ak-47 rifles, three pump rifles, 1,295 live rounds of ammunition, knives, and other weapons were found.

But, Counsel to the applicants, Olajengbesi argued that detaining the applicants in the facility of the DSS for further days would amount to a breach of the constitution and their fundamental human rights.

While citing Section 35 sub-section 4 of the 1999 Constitution, Olajengbesi said that investigation cannot be indefinite and that has applied to the court for an order to detain the applicants for fourteen days for investigation and failed to conclude its investigation as at 2nd of August when the order expired, the DSS had shown that it had no reason for detaining the applicants.

Those the DSS is not opposing to their bail are Abdullateef Ademola Onaolapo, Tajudeen Irinloye, Diekola Jubril Ademola, Ayobami Donald, Uthman Opeyemi Adelabu, Olakunle, Oluwapelumi, Raji Kazeem, and Taiwo Opeyemi Tajudeen.

The Service is however opposing the bail application of Amudat Habibat Babatunde, Abideen Shittu, Jamiu Noah Oyetunji, and Bamidele Sunday.

As of the time of filing the report, the court went on a break for the ruling.

Nigeria Must Follow Due Process To Extradite Igboho, Says Falana

 

Human Rights Lawyer, Femi Falana has asked the Nigerian Government to follow due process in extraditing the Yoruba leader, Sunday Igboho, stating that the rule of law will guide the process.

Mr Falana stated this on Thursday during Channels Television Politics Today programme.

His statement comes after the arrest and detention of the Yoruba leader in the Benin Republic while trying to flee to Germany.

He said the Federal Government must always follow the appropriate legal process in dealing with such cases, adding that there were attempts to put him in a waiting plane to return to Nigeria.

“In the case of Sunday Igboho, despite my disagreement with him, you cannot just throw him into a waiting plane as we were told was attempted.

“You have to go to court, you have to make a request under international law, under the ECOWAS Convention on extradition, the government of Nigeria is requested to submit an extradition request to the government of Benin Republic”.

A file photo of Mr Femi Falana.

 

 

He explained that the former Chief of Army Staff  General Yusuf Buratai (retired), who at that time had not submitted his letters of credence asked that Igboho be handed over to him, he (Buratai )was told that they operate under the rule of law and that’s why the matter is still in court.

READ ALSO: Sunday Igboho Arrested In Benin Republic

Falana noted that he is opposed to the campaign of the division of the country but the law guarantees the rights of self-determination.

He, therefore, asked the federal government to respect human rights and always follow the legal process in dealing with those calling for secession so that the nation will be respected among other countries.

Mr Igboho who was arrested on July 19 was declared wanted for allegedly stockpiling arms, an allegation he has since denied.

Court Orders DSS To Produce Igboho’s Associates

 

Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the Department of State Service (DSS) to produce the 12 aides of Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, who have been in their custody since the second of July, 2021.

The aides to Igboho who were arrested at his residence are expected to be in court on Thursday, 29th July and their case is expected to proceed regardless of the annual court vacation slated to begin on the 26th of July

The suspects had earlier sued the DSS before the Federal High Court Abuja, on grounds that their fundamental human rights had been infringed.

READ ALSO: Sunday Igboho Arrested In Benin Republic

Some of the men suspected to be Igboho’s guards paraded by the DSS in Abuja on July 1, 2021.

 

They also claimed that their arrest and subsequent detention were unlawful.

Earlier, Igbohos aides had sought an order of the court, through their counsel, Pelumi Olajenbasi, compelling the DSS to produce them before the court and to show why they shouldn’t be granted bail in accordance with the provision of section 32 of the criminal justice act 2015.

Their counsel told the court that his clients have remained underground for the past 20 days, and were denied freedom.

He added that they were Nigerian citizens and have inherent rights, just like others, and the world is watching how the judiciary, would vitalize the consciousness of Nigerians.

Surrender Yourself, DSS Tells Sunday ‘Igboho’

Mr Sunday Adeyemi Igboho addressed reporters on January 26, 2021.
Igboho had risen to fame following his quit notice to criminal herders in Oyo State.

 

The Department of State Services (DSS) has called on Sunday Adeyemo ‘Igboho’ to turn himself to security officials as the agency confirmed it has launched a manhunt for the Yoruba nation agitation. 

DSS spokesman Peter Afunanya said this in a press briefing on Thursday evening in Abuja while confirming a raid on Igboho’s house in Ibadan, Oyo State by the security agency.

Igboho
Igboho had earlier issued a quit notice to criminal herders in Oyo State.

 

“Consequently, ADEYEMO/IGBOHO is advised to turn himself in to the nearest security agency,” Afunanya said during the briefing in which he noted that the agency captured thirteen of Igboho’s men.

“Those cheering and eulogising him may appeal to or advise him to do the needful. He should surrender himself to the appropriate authorities. He or anyone can never be above the law. Meanwhile, those arrested will be charged accordingly.”

He said that the DSS recovered a cache of illegal arms — including seven AK-47 rifles — from Igboho’s house during the raid carried out on Thursday morning.

Afunanya narrated that when the security operatives approached the house, they were attacked by nine of Igboho’s boys who engaged them in a gun duel but were subsequently overpowered.

Igboho
Men suspected to be Sunday Igboho’s guards.

 

The DSS official explained that two of Igboho’s men were killed while an operative sustained injuries. He, however, said Igboho escaped during the gun battle and is currently on the run.

“He may hide as long as he wants. He might have attacked security operatives as his strength carried him,” the DSS noted. “But this will be the end of his shenanigans. Soon, he will not have a hiding place.”

READ ALSO: IPOB Cannot Give Sit-At-Home Order In Rivers – Wike

A Crackdown On Separatists 

This photo released by Nigerian authorities on June 29, 2021 shows Mr Nnamdi Kanu in handcuffs.
This photo released by Nigerian authorities on June 29, 2021 shows Mr Nnamdi Kanu in handcuffs.

 

Igboho rose to prominence earlier in the year after he issued a quit notice to herders in Oyo State accused of crimes.

The raid comes less than a week after the arrest of prominent pro-Biafran independence leader Nnamdi Kanu. The leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) group, which supports the secession of the south-east of Nigeria, Kanu was arrested abroad after four years on the run and brought to Nigeria, where he will go on trial for “terrorism” this month.

Biafra — a deprived region almost entirely populated by the Igbo people — was the site of a bloody civil war between 1967 and 1970.

READ ALSOIt Will Be Unwise To Go After Sunday Igboho, Mailafia Tells Security Agents 

A nation of 210 million and over 200 ethnic groups, Nigeria is regularly rocked by ethnic tensions.

The three largest groups are the Hausa-Fulani in the north, the Igbo in the south-east and the Yoruba in the southwest.