The lead counsel for arrested Yoruba Nation activist Sunday Adeyemo aka Sunday Igboho, has described as inhuman, the treatment his client is being subjected to in the custody of the police in Benin Republic.
The counsel, Chief Yomi Alliyu SAN, stated on Tuesday that his client was chained inside the cell, tortured on the hand and forced to cry like a baby. The lawyer confirmed that Igboho wept when they spoke on the telephone on Tuesday.
He said Igboho’s wife, Ropo, a German citizen, who was arrested together with the activist, was also kept in a separate cell by the police in the neighbouring country.
Speaking with Punch, the lawyer said, “They chained him in the cell where they put him in Cotonou. There was a fracas at the airport yesterday when he was arrested. They hit him in the hand and that same hand was handcuffed, he is in pains and he was weeping like a child when I called, I heard him.
“The wife too was put in a separate cell but they didn’t chain the wife. He was crying, the wife was crying too cease he was writhing in pains seriously. We only pray they don’t pay anybody to kill him. You don’t out somebody in cell and still chain the person.
“You know he sustained injury and they didn’t take him to hospital for treatment. We heard that he is appearing in court tomorrow but I don’t know whether that will carry it out.”
Recall that Igboho and his wife were arrested at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, Benin Republic around 8pm on Monday. They were about to catch a flight to Germany before Interpol apprehended them.
The senior advocate, who described the arrest of his client as shocking, urged the government of Germany, Benin Republic and the international community “to rise up and curb the impunity of the Nigerian Government by refusing any application for extradition of our Client who already has application before the International Criminal Court duly acknowledged”.
The Nigerian secret police had raided Igboho’s Ibadan residence in the Soka area on July 1, 2021, arrested about 12 of his aides and killed two of them in a gun duel.
The Federal Government of Nigeria had placed the Nigeria Immigration Service and the Nigeria Customs Service on alert to stop Igboho from leaving the country.
Ex-Army Chief, Buratai Lobbies Beninese Government To Extradite Sunday Igboho To Nigeria
The Nigerian Ambassador to the Benin Republic, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (retd.), is in the forefront of the desperate efforts by the Muhammadu Buhari regime to get Yoruba nation activist, Sunday Adeyemo, aka Igboho, extradited to Nigeria.
ANG learnt that Buratai, who was appointed Nigerian envoy to Benin in June 2021, was also instrumental to the arrest of Sunday Igboho.
A top security source in the Benin Republic revealed that Buratai had secretly written a letter to the Beninese security agencies to arrest Igboho wherever they found him.
“At the moment, Buratai is leading other Nigerian officials and lawyers together with the Interpol to ensure that Igboho is returned to Nigeria as soon as possible. He wants to make that his first success,” a source noted.
“Buratai since the declaration by the Department of State Services sent a secret letter to the Beninese government to be on the lookout for Igboho. There were feelers that Igboho was in the small West African country and some of Igboho’s associates also gave him away,” the source added.
Buratai’s memo was behind the arrest of Igboho and his wife, Ropo, at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, the largest city in the French-speaking country.
Recall that three weeks ago, the Department of State Services declared Igboho wanted for allegedly stockpiling arms, an allegation he had since denied.
Before then, the DSS on July 1, 2021 raided his house at Soka area of Ibadan, killing two of his aides and arresting 12 others.
Later that day, the DSS spokesman, Peter Afunanya, at a press briefing in Abuja, paraded Igboho’s associates and detained them thereafter, denying them access to their lawyers and not charging them to court.
The DSS also paraded some passports, AK-47 rifles, rounds of ammunition, African bulletproof vests, among others as exhibits. The secret police claimed that the items were recovered from Igboho’s house during the bloody raid.
Meanwhile, the activist’s lawyers have reached out to the Benin Republic government to halt his extradition.
It was gathered on Tuesday that the legal team in Benin met with some senior officials in the Francophone country to thwart moves by the Federal Government to repatriate Igboho.
Speaking on the circumstances of Igboho’s arrest and moves by the FG to repatriate him to Nigeria, one of the activist’s lawyers, Pelumi Olajengbesi, explained that the legal team representing the activist had said they would do all that was necessary to prevent their client’s extradition.
Speaking with Punch, he said, “The lawyers we engaged in Benin have met with some officials of the country to prevent the extradition.
“Igboho’s lawyers in Benin have already reached out to senior officials in Benin to ensure that he is not brought back to Nigeria. They (legal team) have assured us that they are doing all that is necessary to keep him in Benin.
“The Federal Government or Benin Republic won’t be able to circumvent the law to bring him to Nigeria. He is currently a prisoner of conscience in Benin Republic and the entire world is watching how the Benin government would manage the matter.”