Olusegun Falola, one of the nine lawyers to Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo (Igboho) has stated that the activist may be killed if the Beninese court decides to free him at this moment when there is still tension between the Nigerian government and its Benin Republic counterpart.
Falola noted that the resumption of Igboho’s trial might take two weeks or months in court, noting that only the judges could determine the next day of trial.The Doctor of Philosophy holder who teaches law in one of the Beninoise universities stated these in an interview with Nation on Thursday.
He said, “Though the laws of Benin Republic do not allow a person to be detained in police custody beyond one week, authorities in the Benin Republic believe that setting Igboho free at the time the matter was still generating a lot of heat in local and international circles might also expose him to danger.
“Igboho has not committed any offence here. He did not even stay here up to one day before he was arrested. He was arrested at the airport on his way out.
“Space and time were not enough to link him with any criminal issue here. This has made it difficult to say his mission here is to cause trouble or commit a crime. He was arrested because of political issues emanating from Nigeria.
“His continued incarceration here is to allow things to calm down and for peace to reign between Nigeria and Benin Republic. We have no criminal allegation against him in the Benin Republic.
“Anyone that insists that we should set Igboho free now only wants him killed. He can be killed, which may cause more problems.
“I have not seen him since Monday, but his wife is allowed to see him. I am processing for permission to see him. But I see his wife from time to time. We spoke about two hours ago. She said he is very safe where he is now. He was given medical attention immediately after he got to the prison.
“The new place is far better than the police cell because he will no longer be in handcuffs. He enjoys full protection and comfort where he is being kept. There is an instruction that he should not be made to feel like a prisoner or criminal. He is not a convict yet.
“About the next court appearance, we have not gone back to the court because that is not how we do it here. It takes some two weeks or months before we can do anything on the matter.
“As a matter of fact, it is the judges that can do something about the next court appearance.”
SaharaReporters had reported how the Benin Republic police two Mondays ago arrested Igboho at the Cardinal Bernardin International Airport in Cotonou, while trying to fly from the country to Germany.
The Department of State Services (DSS) had on July 1 raided the residence of the activist in Ibadan, Oyo state.
Igboho had planned a ”Yoruba Nation Rally” in Lagos two days before the raid.
The DSS raided the residence, killing two people and arresting 12 aides but Igboho escaped.
The agency alleged that Igboho was stockpiling weapons, and subsequently declared him wanted.