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 also known as Sunday Igboho in Benin Republic.
Akintoye in a statement on Tuesday noted that he and other Yoruba patriots are working hard to ensure that Igboho was not extradited to Nigeria. He noted that they had secured the services of a competent lawyer in Benin Republic.
SaharaReporters had reported that Igboho was arrested on Monday night with a Benin Republic passport while trying to flee to Germany.
Akintoye, however, said he, alongside other Yoruba patriots who are immediately available, are currently working to provide assistance for the activist to prevent his extradition to Nigeria, saying “Benin Republic is a land that respects the rule of law.”
In a statement personally signed by him and made available to SaharaReporters by his Communications Manager, Maxwell Adeleye, the Ilana Omo Odua President called on all Yoruba people within and beyond the shores of Nigeria to come out and ensure that their ancestral land is not defeated by invaders.
“I received last night the troubling information that Chief Sunday Adeyemo fondly called Igboho has 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, the 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.”