By Alao Abiodun
The leader of the umbrella body of Yoruba Self-Determination Groups, Ilana Omo Oodua, Professor Banji Akintoye, has disclosed that the body, other groups are working hard to secure the release of embattled Yoruba Nation agitator Sunday Adeyemo aka Sunday Igboho, who is on trial in Benin Republic.
The Nation reports Igboho has been in detention since July 19, 2021 when he was arrested by Interpol at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou.
He was arrested with his wife, Ropo, but the Cour De’appal De Cotonou ordered the release of the Germany-based wife of the activist, saying there were no allegations against her.
Akintoye in a statement made available to The Nation by his Communications Manager, Maxwell Adeleye, described some media reports (Not The Nation) that he has left Nigeria to escape the plots of the government to arrest him as untrue.
Akintoye explained he is Benin Republic to coordinate and supervise how to legally rescue the embattled agitator, from government remand as soon as possible.
He stated that Igboho committed no offense against the Nigeria laws to warrant being arrested, intimidated or harassed and he’ll return back to Nigeria as soon as Ighoho is released by the government of Benin Republic to continue the struggle for the actualisation of Yoruba Nation.
“Myself, the President-General and Professor Wale Adeniran (Chairman) of Ilana Omo Oodua, are currently in the Republic of Benin as reported, but not on the run.
“We are here to supervise and coordinate, by all legal and and other means, the struggle for the release of our son and patriot, Sunday Adeyemo Igboho, detained by the Government from custody.
“By demanding peaceful self-determination for the Yoruba Nation, i am not breaking any law, since self-determination is recognized by the International and Nigerian laws to be an inalienable right of every Nationality, large or small, in the world.
“I have earned a solid reputation as a highly respectable advocate of a peaceful self-determination struggle. I have even written a book on the subject which is already being used as a manual by Yoruba self-determination advocates and organizations.
“Irrespective of what the Nigerian Government may be planning against me, I want to say without any fear or intimidation that I will be returning to Nigeria immediately Ighoho is released from the custody. I can’t be intimidated because I’ve not committed any offense, just like Sunday Igboho.
“Let me tell all Yoruba People across the world that there’s no cause for alarm. I didn’t flee to anywhere. I am in Benin Republic running your errands. The struggle is no retreat, no surrender.”
Akintoye also debunked the media reports that Igboho has been abandoned, and that the embattled agitator is personally funding the court cases against the governments of Nigeria and Benin Republic respectively to secure his (Igboho) and his aides’ release.