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Kinsmen warn FG, Benin Republic against trampling on Igboho’s rights

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[files] Sunday Adeyemo (a.k.a. Sunday Igboho)

Kinsmen of the Yoruba Nation freedom fighter, Chief Sunday Adeyemo, popularly called Sunday ‘Igboho’, under the aegis of the Oke Ogun Development Consultative Forum (ODCF), yesterday, urged both the Nigerian Government and Government of Benin Republic to respect the fundamental rights of the agitator during his trial in court.

In a jointly signed statement by ODCF President, Dr. Olusegun Ajuwon, and Public Relations Officer, Jare Ajayi, the body said that Adeyemo’s mission was meant to put a stop to the injustices being meted out to Yoruba people – of which he is a proud son.

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“We are proud of his desire to see that farmers are no longer prevented from cultivating their farms and women are no longer raped in the course of pursuing their businesses,” the group declared.

ODCF said that while it concedes that the government has a right, and indeed the power, to try anybody thought to have contravened the law, it should in doing so, factor in the relevant sections of the law that say that a suspect is innocent until proven guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction, adding: “Not only that, the governments of Nigeria and Benin Republic should remember the relevant sections of the African Charter and other international conventions to which they are signatories.”

Some of the documents being referred to include Article 4 of the ECOWAS Convention on Extradition, which prescribes that a suspect cannot be extradited if the offence for which he is wanted is ‘political or for the purpose of prosecuting him on account of his ethnic group or political opinion’. Various provisions of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Nigeria is also a party, have similar provisions.

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“Part of what Sunday Igboho advocated was echoed penultimate week by Emir of Muri in Taraba State.

“The monarch had given Fulani herders a 30-day ultimatum to vacate his area because of the harm they are doing to farmers and women in his domain. Reports indicated that the herders last week Monday, August 2, 2021, pledged their readiness to comply with the monarch’s directive.

“There is no difference between what Sunday Igboho was advocating and what Emir of Muri has done. Therefore, we believe that what is good for the goose should also be good for the gander.

“It is within the laws that we seek protection for ourselves and the people, including Sunday Adeyemo Igboho,” the group added.

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