Facts on Tuesday emerged about how Nigeria’s Ambassador to the Benin Republic, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai (retd.), was instrumental to the arrest of the Yoruba nation activist, Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho.
A top security source in the Benin Republic confided in us that the former Chief of Army Staff wrote the government of the small West African country and insisted on the arrest and extradition of Igboho.
It was gathered that Buratai was at the forefront of the ongoing move to extradite the activist.
A few hours after Igboho’s arrest on Monday, his Beninese lawyers and other experts met with some Benin Republic government officials and called for the halting of his extradition.
Buratai, Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff between July 2015 and January 2021, was deployed as Nigeria’s envoy in the Benin Republic in June 2021.
Before then President Muhammadu Buhari had presented Buratai’s nomination to the Senate and the upper chamber of the National Assembly had confirmed the ex-COAS’ nomination despite public outcry of some crimes against humanity allegedly committed by the Nigerian Army under Buratai’s leadership.
A top security source in Benin Republic, who spoke to one of our correspondents said that Buratai through the Nigerian Embassy in the small West African country sent a secret letter to the Benin government to be on the lookout for Igboho.
We gathered that the letter was instrumental to the arrest of Igboho and his wife, Ropo, at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, the largest city in the French-speaking country.
Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, initially escaped arrest at the Cadjèhoun Airport in Cotonou, Benin Republic and was actually already inside the plane before he was lured out and eventual arrested around 8pm on Monday.
A top security source said that Igboho and his wife, Ropo, at first, escaped arrest but a travel agent was used to lure them back to the airport.
The source said, “He (Igboho) was arrested in Cotonou on Monday night while he tried to travel. He was already at the airport with a passport. The immigration officers suspected the passport and so they stopped him. In the process, they discovered he was the one. He was able to escape in the course of discussion and we were grateful to God for that.
“But the travel agent called back saying the matter had been resolved. But on going back, he was arrested. He was trying to travel to Germany when he was apprehended.”