20th July, 2021
Leader of Ilana Omo Oodua (IOO), Professor Banji Akintoye, said a top lawyer has been hired to block Sunday Igboho’s extradition to Nigeria from Benin.
“We have secured the services of a leading and highly respected lawyer whom we can confidently rely on”, Akintoye said in an interview with The Nation.
He did not disclose the identity of the lawyer.
Igboho, declared wanted by the Nigeria’s DSS, was reportedly arrested in Cotonou on Monday, on his way to Germany.
Akintoye, who leads the the umbrella body of Yoruba self-determination groups, said Yoruba Patriots are working hard to provide assistance for Ighoho to prevent his extradition to Nigeria.
“Benin Republic is a land that respects the rules of law”, he said, in a jibe at Kenya, where another separatist campaigner, Nnamdi Kanu was abducted in June and handed over to Nigeria’s security agents.
Akintoye called on all Yoruba people within and beyond the shores of Nigeria to ensure their ancestral land is not defeated by invaders.
“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.
“We have secured the services of a leading and highly respected lawyer whom we can confidently rely on.
“What the situation now calls for is that the Yoruba nation at home and in Diapora must stand strong, resolved that neither Sunday Igboho nor any other Yoruba person will henceforth be subjected to inhuman or dehumanising treatment of any kind.
“We Yoruba nation are, by the grace of God, a very strong nation. We must arise now to show that strength.
“For a start, 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.
“We know, furthermore, that for the protection of his people who are being brutalised, he has joined hands with many of his brethren to take the legally-appropriate step, namely to seek the intervention of the International Criminal Court”.