By Kazeem Ugbodaga
Yoruba Nation activist, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho rose to fame following his role in the Modakeke-Ife communal crisis in 1997, where he played an active part.
Many believe Igboho has metaphysical abilities which make him a formidable opponent in battle.
He gained social media attention in January 2021 when he gave an ultimatum to Fulani herdsmen in Ibarapa to vacate the land after the killing of Dr. Aborode and enforced same. From ordering Fulani in Igangan in Ibarapa Local Government of Oyo State to vacate, he graduated to being a secessionist championing the course for a breakaway of the Yoruba race from Nigeria.
Igboho had announced that Yoruba Nation was no longer part of Nigeria and they were ready to walk away without what government could do. He also threatened there would not be any election in the Southwest in 2023, saying the people of Yoruba Nation were weary of Nigeria.
Everywhere Igboho went, he naturally won the confidence of the common man but one striking problem was his uncouth words and inciting statements which could stoke ethnic tension especially amidst the rising insecurity. He insulted Yoruba monarchs. He even insulted the Ooni of Ife until he was called to order before he sheepishly apologised.
Igboho and his men had invaded Seme Border and forcefully opened it to allow smugglers to come in. It was gathered that his men collected weapons from Customs officers. He has been championing campaigns for Yoruba Nation in different parts of Southwest.
READ ALSO: Sunday Igboho arrested in Cotonou
He once boasted that in a video that he could not be intimidated or arrested by security agents in Nigeria. Igboho disclosed that if 1,000 policemen come to his house in Ibadan to arrest him, all of them might not return.
“If you want to arrest me, come. I live in Soka. Make sure you come with a net and wheelbarrow. And don’t come at night. If about 1,000 of you come at night, if 100 return, it means you use spiritual powers to disappear. I am not the type that can be intimidated by the police,” he had said.
His growing influence has been a thorn in the flesh of the Federal Government. The proposed Lagos rally of the Yoruba Nation agitators was the last straw that broke the camel’s back. The proposed mega rally was seen by the Federal Government as extreme move by Igboho to dare the government of Nigeria.
Few days to the rally, men of the Department of State Services (DSS) struck in commando fashion at midnight at Ighoho’s house. The DSS men killed two of Igboho’s associates and arrested 13 others.
Igboho magically escaped. And reports said the DSS gunmen killed a cat in Igboho’s premises, thinking it was Igboho.
Igboho had gone underground since July 1, the day of the invasion.
The DSS in turn declared him wanted. He has been speaking underground, until he was arrested on Monday night in Cotonou after trying to flee Nigeria to Germany where he is also said to be a citizen.
What happened? How could Igboho have been arrested? Did the charms fail him?
In his campaign for Yoruba Nation, Igboho had failed to heed the advice of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, when he told him in January 2021 to watch his back.
Ooni advised him not to take laws into his hands but allow constituted authorities handle the herdsmen menace.
Speaking on Arise TV in an interview, the monarch said: “Let us be very objective. He (Igboho) is being a mouthpiece for the downtrodden. He came up and everybody is listening now but my advice to him as a traditional ruler is that he needs to be very careful so that the politicians won’t hijack the whole motive from him.
“He has done well and we’ve already praised him but he shouldn’t take laws into his hands. We have the governor there, he is the chief security officer of the state and Mr President has invited him (Makinde). Let the right people that are being authorised to do what is right do it.”
Igboho however pursued his campaign, by organising rallies, in league with other Yoruba Nation agitators.
As things, his comrades are putting together his legal defence, including ensuring that his extradition from Benin is blocked.