The Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Akanmu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso 1, has sent a delegation to Cotonou, Benin Republic, to observe the proceedings of the court case involving Chief Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho.
The first class monarch, who did not disclose the identity of the delegation, said Sunday that those to observe the court proceedings where Sunday Igboho would be facing trial would be in court unfailingly today, Monday.
Oba Adetunji stated this at his Popoyemoja, Ibadan palace while exchanging views with some leaders of thought comprising the Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes President General, Prince Yemisi Adeaga, first Vice President General, Dr. Tirimisiyu Oladimeji; Ekefa Olubadan, Senior Chief Lekan Alabi; Ajia Olubadan, Chief Wasiu Aderoju Alaadorin; Mogaji Makusota, Prof. Oluwasegun Adekunle and Personal Assistant to Olubadan, Mr. Adeola Oloko.
Olubadan said it had become necessary in order to allay the fears of several people including protesters who besiege Olubadan palace every now and then that Kabiesi is not folding his arms over the travails of Sunday Igboho and his co-travellers.
“Sunday Igboho lives in Ibadan, got married in Ibadan, rear children in Ibadan, built houses in Ibadan and as such he has the rights to be protected by Ibadan traditional institution within the ambit of the law just like any human being in Ibadan”.
The first class monarch who stated that he was in constant touch with Yoruba prominent royal fathers, including Igboho royal crowns, allayed public fears of a repeat performance of Yoruba-Fulani coalition of 1814.
According to Oba Adetunji, students of Nigeria history may wish to be reminded that when some people during the period under reference chose to engage in territorial expansion to the sea, it took the Ibadan army under Balogun Oderinlo to repel the attack and stop the incursion near Osogbo.
Oba Adetunji, however, urged the people to remain calm and law abiding as truth would prevail.
Clamping Down On Agitators Can Fuel National Crisis, OPC Warns
Meanwhile, Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) at the weekend cautioned the Federal Government to desist from any attempt to clamp down on self-determination agitators, insisting that such could only fuel national crisis.
Speaking against the backdrop of the recent attack on Yoruba nation’s activist, Sunday Adeyemo’s Soka residence, where two persons were allegedly killed, and his last week’s arrest in Cotonou, Republic of Benin, OPC in a statement by its Publicity Secretary, Yinka Oguntimehin, flayed Federal Government’s approach in Igboho’s ordeals, maintaining that the use and application of force on self-determination agitators has only justified government’s lack of respect to human rights and intolerance to the views of others.
While condemning last Monday arrest of Sunday Igboho by the International Criminal Police Organisation at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, Republic of Benin, the OPC publicity scribe described the treatment meted out to Igboho in Nigeria and also in Cotonou as very unpleasant, insisting that the Federal Government ought to know that the citizens have rights, and that such rights must be protected under the law.
“Unfolding events have shown that there are lapses in the way the Federal Government handles cases of self-determination agitators like Sunday Igboho, and I will like to state it clearly that the Federal Government must desist from clamping down on self-determination agitators, because such move can only fuel national crisis”.
Oguntimehin while urging Benin Republic government to be fair to Igboho, considering the nature of his offence and the constitutionality of his rights to seek asylum in a foreign land, said Igboho will be facing immigration-related offences in Cotonou, noting that he can also seek asylum to ensure his safety.
“The Federal Government has been silent on the extradition order because it might trigger more crisis. You cannot treat Igboho the Nnamdi Kanu way, it would not work, so I am appealing to the Federal Government to learn from history and ensure that the fundamental human rights of the citizens are protected in such a way that we can begin to appreciate the fact that we truly follow the tenets of democracy”.
Again, contrary to insinuations, Nigeria and Benin have no extradition agreement, and Nigeria has not been able to come up with charges that could lead the court to order Igboho’s extradition to Nigeria.
“What the Federal Government came up with were mere allegations against Ighoho such as trafficking in arms and inciting violence that could result in the social disturbance without evidence and the government of Benin Republic had considered all that to be untenable, and insufficient to warrant extradition.
“The case has been adjourned till today, Monday, July 26, to allow the Federal Government bring up whatever evidence they may have, and Mr. Igboho has been taken back to the police custody.”
The OPC chieftain also urged all Yoruba groups, traditional rulers and other well-meaning Nigerians not to leave Igboho in the lurch at this trying moment, declaring that the embattled Yoruba nation agitator had been peaceful in his self-determination approach and he deserves to enjoy his liberty wherever he is in the world.