Ibrahim Salami, one of the Cotonou, Benin Republic-based lawyers of Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, aka Sunday Igboho, has faulted leaked audio where the activist faulted his legal team.
Igboho had expressed confidence in gaining freedom if returned to Nigeria by Benin Republic.
In leaked audio obtained by The PUNCH and confirmed by multiple sources, Igboho alleged that he was abandoned by lawyers who collected a huge amount of money from him in Benin.
Salami explained that the leaked audio is dangerous for the justice being pursued on behalf of Igboho.
According to him, Igboho was angry with him and other members of the legal team because he felt he had no reason to remain in police detention.
The professor of law explained that Igboho found it strange to remain in police custody for “not committing any crime”.
Website Designing/Management/Social Media – Iyanu Victor
“He wants things to be done faster,” the lawyer said in Yoruba.
Salami, who attempted to resist speaking on the matter in the media, also said Igboho didn’t intend to make his complaint public.
“Igboho is someone that gets angry easily and if I have a challenge with a client, it is not something to be discussed in the media,” he added.
Certified French Tutor in Nigeria with Years of Experience – Ms Blessing Akpan
It was gathered that Igboho had made a similar complaint to the leadership of Ilana Omo Oodua, who is handling legal matters for him in Benin Republic.
The Benin Republic-based lawyer hinted that the issues have been resolved, adding that he was continuing his work with other members of the team.
He noted that Igboho has a right to be angry with the way he was detained in violation of the law, in an interview with BBC. “He has a right to be angry,” the lawyer added.
Phones/Laptops/CCTV Installations – iHouse
Why Salami was recruited – Source
A source among the leadership of the umbrella body of Yoruba Self-Determination Groups, Ilana Omo Oodua, said Salami was recruited because of his influence in Benin Republic.
According to the source, Salami understood the legal system in Benin and he is also one of the leading lawyers and consultants to the government.
“Beyond being a professor, Salami understands the legal system. He is a government lawyer. He was very instrumental in stopping Igboho’s extradition the moment he was arrested.
“We also have some challenges with him, but we are hopeful that he will adjust going forward. For instance, after every sitting, he briefs the press first before his clients. That is wrong for elders and causing confusion.
“Apart from Igboho, he is dealing directly with Professors Banji Akintoye and Wale Adeniran, and they don’t get updates from him immediately.”
Earlier in another leaked audio, Sunday Igboho said he does not mind being detained like Nnamdi Kanu.
He alleged that he was abandoned by lawyers who collected a huge amount of money from him in Benin.
The activist said, “It is because of the situation I found myself in. If I am determined to get something done, nobody will resist me. When I insisted that the detention facility that I was kept here should be changed, they were forced to change it. I have accepted destiny. I am no longer scared of anyone. I am ready to face the judge that I am no longer scared of him. He should do whatever he likes.
“If they want to return me to Nigeria, they should go ahead. There is God there. Nnamdi Kanu is also in Nigerian custody and we are fighting a similar cause. I don’t care if I am returned to Nigeria too. I am ready.
“I have been here for almost two months and the lawyers didn’t show enough concern. I have senior lawyers in Nigeria who respect me. I have 42 lawyers defending me in Ibadan and they keep getting the victory.”
Igboho is currently in a detention facility in Benin Republic while four of his aides are in the detention of the Department of State Services.
The Soka, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria, home of the pro-Yoruba self-determination activist was invaded by men from DSS about 1:30 am on July 1, 2021, leading to the arrest of 12 of his aides, while Igboho managed to escape arrest.
The 48-year-old activist was arrested on Monday, July 19, 2021, by the International Criminal Police Organisation at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, Republic of Benin alongside his wife Ropo, on their way to Germany
Igboho won’t change Benin-based lawyers – Counsel
Meanwhile, the Coordinator of Legal Affairs for Igboho, Olasupo Ojo, said Igboho has no plan to change his Benin-based lawyers.
In a chat with The PUNCH on Tuesday, said, “He (Igboho) is not changing any of the lawyers in Benin Republic. We know the lawyers that are working, we know those are not working and we have adjusted according. For the sake of goodwill and everybody concerned, we are not removing any lawyer because each of those lawyers has their good sides and added advantages and we also need their goodwill. It is a foreign country.
“So, we have decided to continue working with all of them. We can manage them. They are all contributing. He may not know what the lawyers are contributing outside; he is only concerned about who he is seeing. All the lawyers cannot be coming to the prison all the time.”
‘Legal team head once sacked Cotonou-based lawyers’
However, speaking with The PUNCH, a member of Igboho’s legal team in Nigeria, Pelumi Olajengbesi, said the leaked audio was a regretted development, adding the head of the entire legal team, Yomi Aliyu (SAN), had once fired all the Benin-based lawyers for related matters the activist accused them of in the leaked audio.
Olajengbesi said, “There is no confusion in the Igboho legal team. Of course, it is a big legal team but it is well-structured. The Igboho case is not a small matter because we are dealing with two nations and the Federal Government of Nigeria is determined by all means to take down Igboho.
“Chief Sunday Igboho is not satisfied with the way in which the matter is handled in Benin Republic. Of course, he is aware of the progress made in Abuja, he is aware of the progress made in Ibadan, Abuja and Lagos.
“The head of the entire legal team of Chief Sunday Igboho is Chief Yomi Aliyu and there was a time he sanctioned the entire team of lawyers in Benin Republic. As a matter of fact, he sacked all of them. It took the understanding of senior lawyers involved in this matter who have always been giving guidance and advice like Chief Femi Falana (SAN), Ojo Olasupo and others to salvage the Benin-based lawyers.
“The legal team in Nigeria is intact, there is an understanding and the matter is going on well.”
The Cour De’appal De Cotonou had on July 26 granted Igboho access to medical care and ordered that he be remanded in a prison facility.
Speaking on the next date of court appearance, Ojo said though no date had been fixed for resumption of Igboho’s trial but the court in the West African country would resume later this September.
Meanwhile, Justice Ladiran Akintola of the Oyo State High Court sitting in Ibadan on Tuesday extended the restraining order he granted against the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN) and the Department of State Services against arresting Yoruba Nation agitator, Chief Sunday Adeyemo aka Sunday Igboho.
He extended the restraining order at the resumed hearing of the fundamental human right suit instituted by Igboho against the defendants on Tuesday.
Justice Akintola in his ruling extended the interim order to September 17.
The judge had on August 4 granted an interim injunction restraining the AGF, the DSS and their agents against arresting, intimidating harassing and freezing bank accounts of Igboho. The court extended the interim order on August 18.
Counsel for Igboho, Chief Yomi Aliyyu (SAN) also on August 26 filed a fresh application before the court for an extension of the interim order.
The AGF on August 30, which was the last adjourned date, also filed an application for the vacation of the restraining order.
At the resumed hearing on Tuesday, counsel for the AGF, Abdulahi Abubakar, prayed the court to set aside the August 4 injunction restraining the AGF.
However, Igboho through his counsel said he filed a counter-affidavit and a written address on August 24, and that he would adopt same and rely on the counter affidavit.
Alliyu argued that the application filed by the AGF was filed out of time because it was done outside the seven days stipulated by Order 4 Rule 6 of the Fundamental Human Rights Procedure Rule 2009.
Justice Akintola extended the restraining order and adjourned till September 17.