The lead counsel to detained Yoruba Nation activist, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, Yomi Alliyu (SAN) has cried out over the alleged inhuman treatment being meted out to his client who was arrested by security operatives in Cotonou, Benin Republic, on Monday.
Alliyu, in a statement made available to Ripples Nigeria on Wednesday, alleged that Igboho is being treated like an ‘animal’ and undergoing harrowing torture and pains in police custody.
According to the lawyer, Igboho is allegedly being treated less than an animal in police custody based on what he termed “order from above.”
“Just about some hours ago, I got a call from a reliable source from the authorities in the Republic of Benin that Sunday Igboho has been put in a very dehumanising condition in a police cell in Cotonou.
“The police source told me that they are under instruction by an order from the above that Igboho should be chained like an animal waiting to be slaughtered. He told me that Igboho was tightly chained to the floor and he is in serious pains.
“While I was talking to the police officer on the telephone, I can hear our client crying and asking that the chains should be removed and that he is pains. But the officer told him that they cannot remove the chains as they are acting on instruction,” Alliyu said.
“I know that our client, Chief Sunday Adeyemo (aka Sunday Igboho), would be taken to a court in Cotonou, the capital of the Republic of Benin, on Wednesday.
“The Nigerian authorities and security operatives that arrested him would be approaching the court for an extradition order to bring Sunday Igboho back to Nigeria.
“But it is not likely that the extradition order being sought for would sail through. This is because of the status of our client as a political offender who enjoys immunity against extradition. Even his arrest by security operatives was against the political nature of his offense.
“There is an existing extradition treaty between four West African countries, including Nigeria, Togo, Ghana and Benin Republic, which grants Igboho immunity from being extradited from Benin.
“The Extradition Treaty of 1984 between Togo, Nigeria, Ghana and Republic of Benin excluded political fugitives. It also states that where the fugitive will not get justice because of discrimination and/or undue delay in prosecution, the host country should not release the fugitive.
“Article 20 of African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights to which the four countries are signatories made agitation for self-determination a fundamental right to be protected by all countries,” he added.