Lawyers step in as the Republic of Benin plans to deport Igboho to Nigeria

There are strong indications that Yoruba Nation agitator Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, may be deported to Nigeria.

After he was deported, he would be arrested by the Nigerian Police, a security source entrusted to our correspondent.

However, the activist’s lawyers have countered the move, stating that it violates international law.

Sources in the Republic of Benin told our correspondent Thursday that the Republic of Benin was not ready to engage in a diplomatic crisis with Nigeria.

One of the sources working with INTERPOL’s National Central Bureau in Benin told The PUNCH that charges against Igboho will result in deportation, fines or imprisonment.

The security officer revealed that “our intelligence agencies have shown that it is unhealthy to detain Igboho here (Republic of Benin).”

The senior NCB official added, “Yes, he has been arrested on new charges. While initially with the Criminelle Brigade, he made useful confessions. His lawyers also know that he was guilty of irregular migration. ”

Another official said: “The least punishment that can be placed on Igboho is deportation to the country he came from (Nigeria) if found guilty. The Nigerian authorities can take over from there if they wish. ”

A Department of State Services official confirmed to our correspondent, “Yes, he is wanted. We have a mandate to arrest him if he enters Nigeria. That is not hidden. ”

When contacted, Igboho’s lawyer warned the Republic of Benin against deporting the activist, as this was dangerous and contrary to international law.

One of the activist’s lawyers said he knew that the FG was putting pressure on the Republic of Benin “through the back door to deport Igboho at a time only known to the security forces of the two countries.”

When asked, Pelumi Olajengbesi, a Nigeria-based lawyer for Igboho, said the plan would fail.

He said: “I know that the federal government is trying to get his deportation through the former head of the army, Tukur Buratai. We can say that clearly.

“So far, the facts before the court have nothing to do with the Nigerian government.

“We don’t have to worry because the government of the Republic of Benin has shown that it will act within the law. For us we believe that Igboho is a criminal of conscience who tried to free his people. ”

Olasupo Ojo, the coordinating lawyer for Igboho, also warned that the deportation from Igboho to Nigeria for his arrest was against international law.

“It is illegal under international law to send back someone who has fled to save their life. You cannot send him to a country where there is enough evidence that his life is in danger. It will fall back heavily on the Republic of Benin if they do, ”he said.

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