No fewer than 11 lawyers are battling to secure the bail of the Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, who has been transferred to a new detention facility in Cotonou, Benin Republic.
After Monday’s hearing, Igboho lawyers said the activist’s trial had taken a new twist, noting that new charges had been filed against him.
His lead counsel, Ibrahim Salami, listed the charges against him as illegal migration, dubious connivance with immigration officers and an attempt to cause civil unrest.
Salami said Igboho was “deeply pained” when the judge ordered that he should be returned to the cell after the case was adjourned.
He confirmed in an interview that lawyers would file his bail application “shortly.”
He clarified that the next date for hearing would be fixed after the lawyers had filed the bail application, adding that Igboho’s trial might begin afresh with the new charges.
Salami, a professor of Law, stated, “We are now nine lawyers on this case in Benin Republic, among whom only three of us can speak Yoruba. There is no adjournment date. There are now new charges.
“The lawyers will now go and apply for his bail and get a date for the hearing. We will now defend him against the fresh charges. Also, there is no day for judgement on the old charges.”
Earlier, a source in the Yoruba self-determination group, Ilana Omo Oodua revealed that two more lawyers would join Igboho’s legal team, stating, “That will make them 11. The two lawyers are being sponsored by Yoruba in the Diaspora.”
Reacting to the new charges, Salami said, “We were first surprised, because it was like magic. We went to court for a reason and we were confronted with fresh charges after sailing through two stages on the initial allegations.
“It’s surprising that was done. Igboho only passed through Benin Republic, while heading for Germany. He didn’t spend up to a day in Benin. We do not think that is rational. One of the fresh charges against him is a criminal case. It is a big offence. It will require a senior judge to adjudicate. It is a serious crime here in Benin Republic.”