The Department of State Services (DSS) has defied a court order to produce the 12 detained aides of Yoruba-nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho.
Justice Obiora Egwuatu of the Federal High Court in Abuja had ordered the DSS to produce in court on July 29, the 12 aides who have been in their custody since July 2, 2021.
Their case was expected to proceed regardless of the annual court vacation slated to begin on July 26.
But since the DSS failed to bring the aides before the court on Thursday, the case has stalled yet again, with Justice Egwatu now issueing another order, asking the DSS to produce the 12 aides in court on Monday, August 2.
While giving the order, he stressed that when a court of competent Jurisdiction, gives an order, such must be respected and obeyed.
Yoruba Nation campaigner Sunday Igboho was on Monday scheduled to appear in a Republic of Benin court to face “likely extradition charges to be brought against him by the Nigerian Government.”
This is according to Yoruba group, the Ilana Omo Oodua Worldwide.
Mr Igboho has been declared wanted by the Department of State Services for threatening national security.
Before fleeing Nigeria for Benin after his house in Ibadan was raided by DSS officials, Mr Igboho had been vocal about the creation of a Yoruba state due to the Nigerian government’s inability to curb herdsmen violence.
No immigration charges
In the Monday statement signed by spokesperson Maxwell Adeleye, the Yoruba group said security operatives in Benin have removed leg-chain and hand-cuff from Igboho since Saturday evening.
The statement also noted that Igboho’s wife, who was arrested with him in Benin but later released, has now been granted access to meet her husband three times daily.
The Benin authorities have also allowed “medical Personnel provided by our legal team” to examine Igboho, the group said.
Meanwhile, the statement stressed that Igboho is not in court to face “any immigration-related probe in Benin Republic” but “likely extradition charges to be brought against him by the Nigerian Government.”
“We urge supporters from Nigeria not to bother coming to the court premises in Bénin,” the statement added.
“Kindly stay in Nigeria and support with prayers and whatever you can do within the ambit of the law.
“We are confident that Chief Igboho shall be set free.”
Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Saturday said certain people are working behind the scenes after Yoruba Nation campaigner Sunday Igboho was arrested in the Republic of Benin.
The Governor made the comment after casting his vote at the Lagos local government elections in Ikoyi.
He was responding to a question about the apparent silence of South-West Governors in the Igboho matter.
Mr Igboho has been declared wanted by the Department of State Services (DSS) for threating the sovereignty of Nigeria.
Before fleeing Nigeria for Benin after his house in Ibadan was raided by DSS officials, Mr Igboho had been vocal about the creation of a Yoruba state due to the Nigerian government’s inability to curb herdsmen violence.
Mr Igboho is currently fighting his extradition from Benin to Nigeria.
“These are very difficult times for all of us,” Governor Sanwo-Olu said on Saturday. “And I can assure you that people are working behind the scenes.
“At events like this, at occasions like these, it is not how many press people you call that leads to . . .
“But I’m aware that a lot of people have responses that they are doing quietly and privately, and it doesn’t have to be a public conversation.”
Yoruba nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, has sued the Federal Government over the invasion of his house and is demanding ₦500 billion as damages.
Igboho filed a notice of application, through his lawyer, Yomi Alliyu, to enforce his fundamental human rights, pursuant to Sections 33-46 of the 1999 Constitution as amended and relevant articles of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights.
Channels Television obtained a copy of the application which was filed on July 22 before the Ibadan Division of the Oyo State High Court.
Apart from the Attorney General of the Federation, the State Security Service and the Director SSS, Oyo State were also listed as respondents.
Igboho is asking the court to among other things declare that the July 1, invasion of his house, Igboho villa in the Soka area of Ibadan is a violation of the fundamental right to privacy.
He’s also seeking an order of the court directing the respondents to return all the items seized from the house. He lists the items to include, N2m cash, one thousand Euros, travel documents including international passports belonging to him and his family members, gold jewelry and wristwatches, 2 mobile phones and other items yet unknown but which were allegedly carted away by the SSS.
Igboho also asked the court to order the respondents to jointly pay him the sum ₦500m as special damages for the damage done to his house and his car and another ₦500bn as exemplary and aggravated damages for beaching his fundamental rights with the malicious invasion of his house as well as an order directing the Federal Government and the other respondents to tender a public apology in two national dailies.
This comes a day after the Federal High Court in Abuja ordered the Department of State Service (DSS) to produce the 12 aides of Igboho, who have been in their custody since July 2.
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.
The Counsel to Sunday Adeyemo popularly known as Sunday Igboho, Chief Yomi Alliyu (SAN), has alleged that his client is going through harrowing torture and pains, having been put in chains in a police cell in Cotonou, the capital of the Republic of Benin.
The Senior Advocate who spoke to our judiciary correspondent, Shola Soyele last night also disclosed that Igboho would appear before a court in Benin by Wednesday morning, for an extradition order.
Igboho was arrested on Monday by the security forces at an airport in Cotonou while trying to flee to Germany. He had earlier been declared a fugitive by the Department of State Services (DSS) and asked to turn himself in.
There were speculations that Igboho had been released by security operatives in the neighbouring West African nation, however, the counsel said his client was still in custody.
Mr Alliyu however stressed that rather than being releases, “Igboho is being treated like an animal in the cell “based on an order from the above.
“I got a call from a reliable source from the authorities in the Republic of Benin that Sunday Igboho has been put in a very dehumanizing condition in a police cell in Cotonou.
“The police source told me that they are under instruction by an order from above that Igboho should be chained like an animal waiting to be slaughtered. He told me that Igboho was tightly chained to the floor and he is in serious pain.
“While I was talking to the police officer on the telephone, I could hear our client crying and asking that the chains should be removed as he is in pain. But the officer told him that they cannot remove the chains as they are acting on instruction,” the lawyer said.
Alliyu, also restated that the extradition order being sought for by the Nigerian authorities may not likely sail through, given the status of Igboho as a political offender.
“I know that our client, Chief Sunday Adeyemo (aka Sunday Igboho Oosa), would be taken to a court in Cotonou, the capital of the Republic of Benin, tomorrow, Wednesday.
“The Nigerian authorities and security operatives that arrested him would be approaching the court for an extradition order to bring Sunday Igboho back to Nigeria.
“But it is not likely that the extradition order being sought for would sail through. This is because of the status of our client as a political offender who enjoys immunity against extradition.
“Like I said in a press release earlier today, even his arrest by security operatives was against the political nature of his offense.
“There is an existing extradition treaty between four West African countries, including Nigeria, Togo, Ghana, and Republic, which grants Igboho immunity from being extradited from the Republic of Benin.
“The Extradition Treaty of 1984 between Togo, Nigeria, Ghana, and Republic of Benin excluded political fugitives. It also states that where the fugitive will not get justice because of discrimination and/or undue delay in prosecution, the host country should not release the fugitive.
“Article 20 of African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights to which the four countries are signatories made agitation for self-determination a fundamental right to be protected by all countries,” he said.
Raid on Igboho’s house and arrest of Yoruba Nation Agitators
On July 1, the Department of State Services (DSS) said a team of joint security operatives raided the home of Yoruba Nation agitator Sunday Adeyemo aka Sunday Igboho in Ibadan, arresting 13 of his armed men.
DSS Spokesman, Dr. Peter Afunanya in a briefing with journalists said the raid was based on intelligence that Igboho was stockpiling arms to cause chaos within the region.
Afunanya said 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.
According to him, two of Igboho’s men were killed while an operative sustained injuries, however, Igboho escaped during the gun battle and is currently on the run.
Afunanya who said the long arm of the law will still reach Igboho, urged the agitator to turn himself in or be tracked down.
The 13 suspected armed agitators that were arrested consist of 12 males and 1 female. A large cache of arms and ammunition was also recovered by the operatives.
Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, has been arrested in Cotonou, Benin Republic.
Although security agents in the country are yet to confirm the arrest, renowned historian and leader of the Umbrella Body of Yoruba Self-Determination Groups, Professor Banji Akintoye, in a statement on Monday, confirmed the incident.
“I received last night the troubling information that Chief Sunday Adeyemo fondly called Igboho had been arrested at the Cotonou Airport,” Akintoye said.
According to The Punch, Igboho was arrested at an airport in Cotonou on Monday night by the security forces in Benin Republic while trying to flee to Germany.
“He was arrested in Cotonou while he tried to travel out on Monday night. His destination was Germany. The security forces in Benin Republic should repatriate him to Nigeria on Tuesday,” the source said.
A renowned historian and leader of the Umbrella Body of Yoruba Self-Determination Groups, Emeritus Professor Banji Akintoye, has confirmed the arrest of Yoruba Nation Agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly called Sunday Igboho in Benin Republic.
Akintoye, however, said he, alongside others are currently working to provide legal assistance for Ighoho to prevent his extradition into Nigeria, saying “Benin Republic is a land that respect the rules of law.”
This was disclosed in a statement signed on Tuesday by Akintoye.
“I received last night the troubling information that Chief Sunday Adeyemo fondly called Igboho had been arrested at the Cotonou Airport.
“I and other Yoruba Patriots who are immediately available are now working to provide the assistance necessary to ensure that nobody will be able to do to him anything unlawful or primitive and to prevent him from being extradited into Nigeria which is strongly possible.
“Fortunately, Benin Republic is reliably a land of law where the authorities responsibly obey the law,” the statement read in part.
He added that a “leading and highly respected lawyer,” has been hired in defence of Igboho.
He urged Yoruba citizens to stand strong and ensure that “neither Sunday Igboho nor any other Yoruba person will henceforth be subjected to inhuman or dehumanizing treatment of any kind.”
“We must all see to it now that Sunday Ighoho will get his freedom back so as to be able to move and operate as a free person. We all know he has committed no crime.
“We know that some people are trying to suppress or even eliminate him only because he stood up to defend his kinsmen, women and children who are being massively killed and raped in their ancestral home Land; who are having their assets and means of livelihood destroyed, and who are facing ethnic cleansing and even genocide without having the benefit of protection by the rulers of their country,” the statement read in part.
The popular historian called on all Yoruba citizens within and beyond the shores of Nigeria to ensure that their ancestral land is not defeated by invaders.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday commended the nation’s security and intelligence agencies for their work in arresting secessionist Nnamdi Kanu and raiding the home of ‘Yoruba Nation’ activist Sunday Igboho.
The President’s praise was contained in a statement signed by his spokesperson Garba Shehu.
According to the statement, President Buhari said the security agencies demonstrated “significant deftness, guile and secrecy in carrying out these missions.
“This level of professionalism must be sustained and brought to bear as we focus on extracting from our society those who have found a new trade in targeting students, rural dwellers and our citizens in the North-West.
“The nation recognizes their efforts and sacrifice.”
Read Mr Shehu’s full statement below:
STATE HOUSE PRESS RELEASE
PRESIDENCY STATEMENT ON THE RECENT SUCCESSES OF SECURITY AND INTELLIGENCE AGENCIES
Last week, we saw the enhanced collaboration of the Nigerian Law Enforcement Agencies, as they executed with great synchronization arrests of individuals who had inflicted pain and hardships on fellow citizens.
The subversive leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) a group known for its murderous actions and virulent messaging was detained as a result of cross-border cooperation. This international operation was executed in a closely coordinated fashion following which he was handed over to our National Intelligence Agency, and then returned to Nigeria to face the Law.
The violence inspired by IPOB has led to hundreds of fatalities, particularly targeted at Government assets and Law Enforcement Agents. Additionally, there have been at last count, fifty (55) separate violent attacks, heavily concentrated in the South-East, which heaped further hardship on our honest and hardworking citizens, preventing them from earning their livelihood and going about their normal lives.
The Government had long been monitoring the activities of IPOB and had strong cause to believe that their funding sources include proceeds of suspected illicit criminal activities. By this singular action of our Security Forces, sanity, calm and peace has been returned to our communities who previously lived in constant fear of these misguided elements.
In furtherance of continued diligent work, the State Security Service on Thursday, 1st July raided the residence of a militant ethnic Secessionist, who has also been conducting acts of terror and disturbing the peace under the guise of protecting fellow “kinsmen”.
His seditious utterances and antics, which he is known to have publicly expressed, have overtime morphed into very hateful and vile laden speeches. It must be highlighted that the government respects fundamental rights of citizens to express their views and recognizes this as a democratic tenet. However, any attempt to build an Armoury coupled with plans either subtle or expressed to undermine our unity as a nation will not be condoned.
Mr. President’s directives to Security Services regarding anyone seen to be carrying arms, particularly AK-47 are clear and require no further illumination. Assault weapons are not tools of peace loving people and as such, regardless of who they are and where they are from, the Security Agencies should treat them all the same.
The successes of our Security Agencies must be commended as they have demonstrated significant deftness, guile and secrecy in carrying out these missions. This level of professionalism must be sustained and brought to bear as we focus on extracting from our society those who have found a new trade in targeting students, rural dwellers and our citizens in the North-West. The nation recognizes their efforts and sacrifice.
Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana has reacted to the Department of State Services’ (DSS) raid on the house of popular Yoruba activist, Sunday Adeyemo also known as Sunday Igboho.
Speaking during an interview on Channels Television Programme, Politics Today, the Senior Advocate of Nigeria described the action of the security agents as a “nocturnal coup,” and stressed that no law allows arrest at the dead of the night.
He lamented that the raid, which was carried out around 1:00 a.m. on Thursday, last week is a dangerous legacy of military dictatorship in Nigeria.
“There is no law in Nigeria that allows you to arrest somebody in the dead of the night when you are not planning a coup and you are not an armed robber.
“These are very dangerous legacies of military dictatorship in our country.
“There is no provision unless a crime is being committed in the night; you cannot go there and arrest. In this case, you are required by law to bring a search warrant. In this case, there was no search warrant, nobody took an inventory.
“Now, Sunday Adeyemo has said I didn’t have any gun in my house. Yet, the SSS paraded guns and other ammunition. All the controversies would have been unnecessary if the SSS had behaved like a modern, civilised agency,” Falana said.
Falana also reacted to the decision of the Southern governors in Lagos State on Monday that security agencies must notify them as the chief security officer of their states before they carry out any operation within their domain.
According to him, the decision of the governors is late.
“It is a decision that is coming rather late. Governors are chief security officers of their states in line with the constitution. Each state has a security council and the governor is the chairman,” he said.
“The invasion of the home of Igboho happened in the night.
“You can’t have a situation where nocturnal arrests are made in a state as if you are planning a coup. Take Ibadan for instance, the invasion of the home of Igboho happened at the night and for all-day, everybody was wondering who did it and that seven people were killed.
“People were arrested and abducted at 2:00 a.m, the governor of the state wasn’t aware. So, everybody was trying to find out, calling security agencies, only for the State Security Service to issue a very provocative statement after almost 12 hours to say, ‘We did it, we killed two people, we raided a house.
“Somebody attempted to evade arrest and you killed two people? The governor of the state wasn’t aware?”
The Department of State Services (DSS) hours after an attack on the home of Yoruba Nation agitator in Ibadan, confirmed that a team of joint security operatives raided his home and arrested 13 of his armed men.
DSS Spokesman, Dr. Peter Afunanya told journalists that the raid was based on intelligence that Igboho was stockpiling arms to cause chaos within the region.
In an interview with BBC Pidgin published on Monday, Soyinka said the government’s actions and rationale for invading Igboho’s home “stinks.”
“My advise to the government is that they should stop pursuing Igboho as a criminal, because you have begun by acting in a criminal fashion against him,” he said.
“If and when Igboho comes to trial, I guarantee you the government will be very embarrassed.
“I think they should tell Igboho ‘we made a mistake’, ‘we should not have acted in this way’, ‘you are no longer wanted’, ‘go back to your home, in fact escort him to his home’ and let him resume his normal life.”
According to Soyinka, Igboho’s fight for freedom was preceded by criminal acts of enemies of Nigeria who “appear to be supported by the force of the State.”
While Soyinka noted he doesn’t ‘like the sound of a Yoruba Nation’ anymore than he likes the sound of a Tiv or Igbo nation, he said the country must be restructured through the decentralisation of power.
According to the erudite professor, Nigeria’s current structure was imposed upon the people by the military.
Popular Yoruba rights activist, Sunday Adeyemo, aka Sunday Igboho, should have joined the South-West Security Network Agency, also known as Amotekun corps.
A former Assistant Director with the Department of State Services (DSS), Dennis Amachree, stated this on Friday during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.
“The action of the DSS is preemptive and it is also a warning to all those who have been stockpiling arms in different parts of the country,” he said in reaction to a raid carried out by DSS operatives on Igboho’s house in Ibadan on Thursday.
“We have Amotekun. Why is Sunday not operating with Amotekun? This is a question that should be asked but he is operating a separate thing different from Amotekun and of course, having all kinds of weapons.
“With all those loaded magazines, that means he is ready for war and I don’t think that is the way to go. If people are going for self-determination, there are peaceful ways of going about it.”
Amachree’s remarks come a day after the secret service said a team of joint security operatives apprehended 13 of his armed men.
DSS spokesman, Peter Afunaya had during a press conference in Abuja said the raid was based on intelligence that Igboho was stockpiling arms to cause chaos within the region.
He noted that nine of Igboho’s boys attacked security operatives, adding that they were overpowered, leading to the death of two persons.
The secret service explained the long arm of the law will still reach Igboho, urging the agitator to turn himself in or be tracked down.
“He might have attacked security operatives as his strength carried him. But this will be the end of his shenanigans. Soon, he will not have a hiding place. His strength will sure fail him,” Afunaya added.
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.