The Department of State Service (DSS) on Wednesday produced all 12 detained aides of Sunday Adeyemo popularly known as Sunday Igboho before the Federal High Court in Abuja.
This comes less than seventy-two hours after the court ordered the agency to produce all aides of the Yoruba Nation agitator.
On Monday the DSS produced only eight of the detained aides at the court.
The aides were arrested when DSS officials raided Igboho’s home on July 1, but a lawyer to the apprehended aides, Pelumi Olajengbesi, has sued on grounds that their fundamental human rights were being infringed on.
The DSS had paraded the aides and accused them of stockpiling arms to cause chaos in the country.
After the DSS raid on his (Igboho) home, he fled to the Benin Republic and is presently in court fighting extradition back to Nigeria.
Mr. Igboho gained social media prominence after issuing an ultimatum to Fulani herdsmen in Ibarapa to vacate the land after the killing of Dr. Aborode
Mr. Igboho had on July 28 denied claims by the Nigerian Government that he was trafficking arms and inciting violence in Nigeria.
His lead counsel, Ibrahim Salami disclosed this to journalists on Tuesday after the court proceedings in the Benin Republic.
He added that his client told the judge that the Nigerian Government rather put him on a watchlist for resisting the encroachment of killer herdsmen.
“Igboho said he never had any criminal record in Nigeria. He told the judge that the Nigerian government was after him because he was defending the Yoruba race against killer Fulani herdsmen.
“He said that he ran away from Nigeria because the government was after his life,” the lawyer explained.
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.
The court held that one of the sureties must be a family member and the other a community leader or clergy. Both sureties must have proof of tax payment which is to be verified by the police.
The Lagos Police Command had paraded all 49 suspects arrested in connection with Oodua Republic mega rally at Ojota.
Those paraded include 47 men and two women.
According to Commissioner of Police (CP) Hakeem Odumosu, some of them were intercepted and found with guns, axes, Oodua flags, Yoruba Armed Forces vests and other items. Others were arrested at the protest ground in Ojota.
Those granted bail include Olasunkanmi Tanimola; Kabiru Lawanson; Chinemerem Emmanuel; Rasaki Musibau; Lukman Olalade; Olasanmi Oladipupo; Bashiru Shittu; Taofeek Abdusalam; Olamilekan Abata; Abdullahi Sikiru; Tosin Adeleye; Babatunde Lawal.
Also included are, Abiodun Taiwo, Adagunodo Babatunde, Oluwafemi Adeleye, Oloye Taiwo, Saheed Kareem, Adebayo Waheed, Akinbode Sunday, Lawal Akeem, Samuel Ire, Ogundile Dare, Oba Tajudeen Bakare.
Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka has said he will prefer a united Nigeria but not in its current shape.
According to the eminent professor, those calling for Yoruba Nation still need to define what it really means, before he can be in a position to speak on it.
He made the remarks during a recent interview with BBC Pidgin.
In the same interview, Soyinka condemned the Federal Government’s raid of the home of Yoruba secessionist, Sunday Igboho.
What Soyinka Actually Said On Yoruba Nation
“I don’t like the sound of a Yoruba Nation anymore than I like the sound of a Tiv nation or an Igbo nation. The reason is this: there are certain pejorative overtones, chauvinistic overtones attached to it. That’s not the issue. When you talk about Yoruba Nation, are we talking about the creation of a nation within Nigeria alone or across colonial borders into Cotonou, Benin Republic, where Yoruba exists, moving on to Togo and even Ivory Coast? So when we talk about Yoruba Nation, I have to know exactly what you mean. Do we even talk about the Yoruba in the Diaspora?
“So it’s a question which is not for me to answer at this particular moment. All I know is this, on a sentimental level, I will prefer us to mend and manage what we have but under certain, rigorous conditions.
“The condition is decentralisation. We have to move away completely from this constitution which was imposed on us by an internal, neo-colonial force called the military. Now, if it had worked, if it were working, my position would have been different.
“My conditions are non-negotiable. We have to get away from the present political arrangement, because they clearly are not working; they are creating internal overlords, they are creating a skewed, lopsided revenue-sharing system. They are robbing Peter to pay Paul.
“Right now, what we have is not a nation but a basket-case, a real basket-case which is disintegrating all over the place, and all the contents are spilling over the basket. And all we are trying to do is to hold it there, grab it there, cover it there, cover that leak, and so on; a nation can’t continue like this. It’s obvious. And some people are more impatient than others.”
The umbrella body of Yoruba Self-Determination Groups, Ilana Omo Oodua (IOO), has confirmed that the pro-Yoruba nation’s rally scheduled to hold in Lagos State on Saturday, July 3, will still take place.
The group said this in a statement made available to journalists by its Communications Manager, Mr. Maxwell Adeleye on Friday.
“Our rally scheduled to hold on Saturday will still hold without any fear or intimidation and we promise to be peaceful like we have always been,” Adeleye said.
Meanwhile, the IOO, in another letter to the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Hakeem Odumosu, and copied to the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babatunde Sanwoolu by its General Secretary and Legal Adviser, Arc. George Akinola and Barr. Olasupo Ojo respectively, urged the state Police Command to ensure that the rally is peaceful, orderly and not hijacked by hoodlums as earlier insinuated by the police.
“We have been peaceful, orderly and lawful at everywhere we have visited, therefore, we call on the Lagos State Police Command to ensure that the rally is not hijacked by hoodlums.
“We are happy that the Police already know that hoodlums are likely to hijack the rally. Now, we call on the police to ensure such does not happen like it didn’t happen in Ekiti, Ondo, Osun, Oyo and Ogun States respectively where we’ve held our rallies.
“It is the duty of the Police to safeguard our peaceful demonstration and protect us. On our own part, we promise to cooperate with the police towards ensuring that the rally is peaceful and orderly,” the statement added.
While the reason for the meeting was not clearly stated, it may not be unconnected to the agitations in the country and the recent raid on the home of Yoruba activist, Sunday Adeyemo a.k.a Sunday Igboho in Ibadan by the Department of State Services (DSS).
DSS Spokesman, Dr. Peter Afunanya, in a briefing with journalists late Thursday evening, said the raid was based on intelligence that Igboho was stockpiling arms to cause chaos within the region.
The Department of State Services (DSS) on Thursday 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, disclosed this in a briefing with journalists late this evening. He 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.
Below are photos of items recovered from Igboho’s house.
A full communique regarding the joint operation at Igboho’s house appears below.
PRESS BRIEFING AT THE NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE SERVICES (DSS) ABUJA ON A JOINT SECURITY OPERATION ON 1ST JULY, 2021 AT IBADAN, OYO STATE
In the early hours (about 0134 hours) of today, 1st July, 2021, a joint team of security operatives raided the residence of Sunday Adeniyi Adeyemo a.k.a. SUNDAY IGBOHO at Soka, Ibadan, Oyo State. This was based on intelligence that he had stockpiled arms in the place. On approach to the residence, the team came under heavy gun attack by nine (9) men, suspected to be IGBOHO’s guards. Six (6) of them were armed with AK-47 gun and Three (3) others, with Pump-Action riffles.
2. In the course of the exchange, two (2) of IGBOHO’s armed men were gunned down while the rest were subdued and arrested. Only one operative who was shot by the assailants on his right hand sustained injury. He has however received medical attention and is very stable.
3. Afterwards, the team procedurally searched the house and subsequently recovered the following among others: i. Seven (7) AK-47 assault rifles; ii. Three (3) Pump Action guns; iii. Thirty (30) fully charged AK-47 magazines; iv. Five Thousand (5,000) rounds of 7.62mm ammunition; v. Five (5) Cutlasses, One (1) Jack knife, One (1) Pen Knife vi. Two (2) Pistol holsters; vii. One (1) binoculars viii. A wallet containing Five (5) US Dollars in one (1) Dollar denomination; local and international driver’s licences in his name, ATM Cards, a German residence permit No. YO2N6K1NY bearing his name; ix. Two (2) whistles; x. Fifty (5) Cartridges; xi. Eighteen (18) Walkie-Talkies; xii. Three Voodoo charm jackets/traditional body armour; xiii. Two (2) Laptops (One (1) Toshiba and One (1) Compaq); and xiv. His International Passport and those of many others (as displayed here). Further exploitation and forensic analysis are ongoing.
4. Aside the items recovered from the building, about thirteen (13) suspects including twelve (12) males and one (1) female were arrested and brought to Abuja. While one suspect is being profiled, the other twelve (12) paraded here are: i. Abdulateef OFEYAGBE ii. Amoda BABATUNDE aka Lady K (female) iii. Tajudeen ERINOYEN iv. Diakola ADEMOLA v. Abideen SHITTU vi. Jamiu NOAH vii. Ayobami DONALD viii. Adelabe USMAN ix. Oluwafelumi KUNLE x. Raji KAZEEM xi. Taiwo OPEYEMI and xii. Bamidele SUNDAY.
5. Highlights of this brief are to: i. Inform Nigerians and the world that Sunday IGBOHO and his group, in the guise of campaign for self-determination, have become well-armed and determined to undermine public order. This, the arrests and seizures are, no doubt, a confirmation of a grand plan by IGBOHO and his cohorts to wage a violent insurrection against the Nigerian State. ii. Alert foreign missions and licencing authorities within and outside Nigeria about this development and the possibility that IGBOHO could declare some of his personal permit and identity cards missing in order to seek their replacement. iii. Apprise stakeholders that the Five (5) AK-47 assault rifles recovered from the building are suspected to be those collected by IGBOHO’s men from Nigerian Customs and Immigration personnel at Idi Iroko, Ogun State.
6. The gun duel which lasted for an hour offered IGBOHO the chance to escape. Sunday ADEYEMO a.k.a Sunday IGBOHO is now on the run. IGBOHO may run as far as he can. He may hide as long as he wants. 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. And the law will catch up with him. The law may be slow. But it will be steady.
7. Consequently, ADEYEMO/IGBOHO is advised to turn himself in to the nearest security agency. 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.
Peter Afunanya, Ph.D Public Relations Officer Department of State Services National Headquarters Abuja. 1st July, 2021
Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka has distanced himself from statements making the rounds on social media, suggesting that he supports the agitation for the Yoruba Nation.
In a statement seen on Thursday, the laureate urged the general public to ignore the utterances of those he described as “contemptible interlopers” who lack the courage of their conviction and thus take to Identity Theft for the furtherance of their views.
The statement added that Professor Soyinka does not express his opinions on national issues on social media except through print media.
“For a start, Wole Soyinka does not participate in Facebook, Tweet, Blog, WhatsApp, or other offerings of Social Media. Any views that he wishes to express on national and other issues routinely go through the print media,” the statement partly reads.
Marginalization of the South-West
Sunday Igboho, a self-acclaimed activist, and Ayo Adebanjo, one of the leaders of the Afenifere socio-political organization recently came up with the push for the Yoruba Nation.
According to the activists, this political ideology seeks to liberate and make sovereign the Yoruba tribe from Nigeria where the activists believe the Odua people have continued to be marginalized.
This opinion, however, has not sat well with many political leaders within the region and several statesmen have kicked against the move, asking instead that the citizens do more to accommodate all Nigerians regardless of tribe and religion.
A former presidential candidate, Kingsley Moghalu, has urged the Federal Government to dialogue with secessionists and believes addressing the root causes of their agitations will help in dousing tensions in the West African nation.
Moghalu made the call on Wednesday when he featured on Channels Television’s breakfast show, Sunrise Daily, and believes secessionist agitators feel marginalised and are seeking justice.
“I think that the government should be able to invite, whether it is IPOB or Sunday Igboho, all the secessionists; invite them to the table,” the former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) deputy governor noted.
The Nigerian government had in 2017 proscribed the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB), the group spearheading agitations for the creation of an independent Biafra nation but Moghalu has faulted the move, insisting instead, that the reasons for their actions should be looked into.
While he admitted that IPOB and other agitators may be addressing their challenges in a wrong way, he argued that tagging them as terrorists is not the way to tackle the issue.
“They are essentially political agitators. You can call them terrorists. That is your own prerogative but we know what terrorism means in reality. Boko Haram are terrorists. We know that,” the economist and lawyer added.
“When people begin political agitations and we very easily throw terrorism at them just because they are mouthing off and speaking in a language that nobody likes or insulting their fellow citizens. That is their way of handling this type of thing.
“Can we address the agitations? Don’t be afraid to address the core reasons behind the agitation because they are crying out for justice. They feel marginalised. What is wrong with addressing those issues?”
Calls for secession have become widespread in Africa’s most populous nation especially in the southeast and southwest regions.
In the southwest, Sunday ‘Igboho’ Adeyemo who rose to prominence earlier in the year after he issued a quit notice to herders in Oyo State accused of crimes, is leading calls for the creation of a Yoruba nation, threatening to disrupt the 2023 polls.
IPOB had equally renewed campaigns for the independence of the southeast region following the election of President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015, accusing the government of marginalising the area.
The leader of the group, Nnamdi Kanu, had fled the country one year after he faced trial for treason but the pro-Biafra organisation ordered a sit-at-home in the region on Monday to mark the end of the Nigerian Civil War.
Clashes between the secessionist groups and Nigeria’s security forces have also made headlines. Over the weekend, the Nigerian Army said it stormed a “terrorist enclave” run by members of the Eastern Security Network (ESN) – the security arm of IPOB – in Rivers State and killed at least seven persons.
“In the firefight that ensued during the Clearance/Raid Operation, 7 IPOB/ESN members were neutralized while 5 suspects arrested,” the army said in a statement signed by army spokesman, Brigadier-General Mohammed Yerima.
“Various items belonging to the criminals including arms and ammunition were also recovered by the security forces. The camp was promptly destroyed while suspects and corpses were handed over to the Police for further actions.”
“Nigeria is facing numerous security challenges occasioned by the activities of Boko Haram terrorist group, armed bandits kidnappers, IPOB and other criminal elements,” the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Major General Farouk Yahaya said during the passing out parade of the 80 regular recruits intake at the Nigerian Army Depot, Zaria in Kaduna State on Saturday. “We would not rest on our oars until this country is safe for all of us.”
Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has denied the claim that he is in support of a Yoruba nation.
He, however, declared his commitment to a virile, united, and indivisible Nigeria as demanded by the Southern Governors’ Forum.
The Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Richard Olatunde, made Governor Akeredolu’s position known in a statement on Sunday following a rally in Akure, the state capital.
According to Olatunde, some group of persons who participated in the rally held on Saturday claimed to have had the governor’s support for the march in which they were calling for Yoruba nation.
He explained that the governor’s action of acknowledging the right of individuals and groups to hold peaceful rallies was misconstrued to mean support for the secessionist agenda, stressing that it was far from it.
The governor’s aide stated that his principal’s opinion on the rally in Akure was only to prove that he was not opposed to any civil protest that does not breach the laws of the land.
He insisted that Governor Akeredolu, who is also the Chairman of the South-West Governors’ Forum, never supported the quest for Yoruba nation outside of Nigeria, adding that the secessionist promoters do not enjoy any backing of the governor.
At the rally, a Yoruba rights activist, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, was reported to have said Governor Akeredolu was aware and in support of their agitation for Yoruba nation.
Read the full statement from the governor’s aide below:
Yoruba Nation Agitators On Their Own – Akeredolu
It has come to the knowledge of the Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, that some group of persons who held a rally under the cover of what they term ‘secessionist agitations’ in Akure, on Saturday, May 22, 2021, erroneously claimed to have had his support for the rally.
Governor Akeredolu wishes to state clearly that while he acknowledges the right of individuals and groups to hold peaceful rallies, it must not be misconstrued to mean support for secessionist agenda and or balkanisation of the nation. Far from it.
Unequivocally, the Governor’s opinion on the Akure rally or any other of its ilk, is only to the effect that he is not opposed to any civil protest which is not in breach of the extant laws of the nation.
He neither believes nor supports the quest for the Yoruba nation outside of Nigeria in the manner canvassed.
Governor Akeredolu stands by a virile, united, and indivisible Nigeria as demanded by the Southern Governors’ Forum.
Therefore, the vigour, zeal, leadership, and candour displayed by Governor Akeredolu for a just and fair Nigeria is altruistic and borne out of patriotism for the nation, as well as love for his people, the Yoruba ethnic nationality.
It is important, therefore, to state without any equivocation that the Yoruba nation secessionist promoters do not enjoy any lending hand in Governor Akeredolu.
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor of Ondo State.
Some residents of Osogbo, Osun State capital have occupied the streets agitating for the creation of Yoruba nation.
Clad in t-shirts with the ‘Yoruba Nation’ inscription, the protesters converged on November 27 Bridge before proceeding to Nelson Mandela Freedom Park, Osogbo, the Osun State capital.
The group, under the umbrella of Omo Oduduwa United marched through the streets of Oshogbo from Ogo-Oluwa, Aregbe junction, Fakunle, Ola-Iya, and Odi Olowo before gathering at the freedom park to make their demands known.
They carried placards and chanted songs of solidarity.
Also at the rally, is the popular Yoruba rights activist, Sunday Adeyemo also known as Sunday Igboho.
He joined other agitators at the Nelson Mandela Freedom Park to demand the Yoruba Nation.
Igboho also demanded the release of operatives of the Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) who were detained for arresting notorious Fulani herder, Iskilu Wakili, in the Ibarapa area of Oyo State.
The venue of the rally was heavy with the presence of operatives of the Nigeria Police Force as well as men of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.
Professor Banji Akintoye says the Yoruba people are living like slaves in Nigeria, arguing that the Yoruba nation deserves more.
Speaking while appearing as a guest on Channels Television’s News Night, Professor Akintoye said it is sad that the Yoruba nation with all its greatness should be suffering as it is in Nigeria.
Professor Akintoye said:
“We are more-or-less like an enslaved people in this country, most of the people of the middle belt and the south are like enslaved people in this country, we are being ruled by impunity.
“There is no respect for the constitution or the law, the people who control the power of government in Abuja are doing what they like.
“There is no sense of responsibility in terms of security of the people, people are being killed and the government in Abuja is not really doing much, in fact for a long time they were not doing anything to protect us and they are using their power more to compel the authorities of our state to make it possible for the people who say they are coming to kill and maim and destroy to enter into our land and to take territory and settle under whatever name you may call it.”
As far as the academic is concerned, it is irresponsible for the government to say to a people who are being brutalised by a particular set of people to accept their oppressors.
This he said in reaction to the farmers-herders clashes and the solutions proffered by the government of the day.
Professor Akintoye further noted that he is suspicious about the intentions of the Federal Government with regard to the RUGA concept.
According to him, it is not a question of presentation, it is a question of the agenda behind all that is happening.
He was of the opinion that the Federal Government seems these days to be doing nothing more than to think of ways to get the Fulanis to be admitted into lands within the Southern and Middlebelt regions.
Still speaking on the clashes between herders and farmers, Professor Akintoye stated that the Yorubas are not opposed to Fulanis.
He argued that it is in the culture of the Yorubas to welcome people, adding that the Yorubas do not attack strangers on their lands.
“It is a traumatic experience for a Yoruba to raise his hand against visitors on his land,” Akintoye stressed.
Narrating what the relationship used to be in the past, the historian said; “Cattle herders were coming to our farms when I was a child; a peasant farmer’s child.
“We would go to the farm and we see the herder with the cow and we would play with the cattle and he would protect us and tell us not to go too near to them because they could kick you. He was a very nice person. He was not a hostile person who did his work.
“But now, there is an agenda. Not all cattle herders, but some herders come in to deliberately provoke conflicts because behind them are well-trained militias.”
Regarding the issues of restructuring in Nigeria, the revered writer held that Nigeria is a country of nations and not a nation in itself.
He added that each nation within Nigeria deserves to be respected.
For him, the issue of restructuring is a question of responding to the demands of the moment.