The Department of State Services Thursday declared the self-acclaimed Yoruba secessionist, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Igboho, wanted and launched a manhunt for him.
The DSS also confirmed that at 1:34am Thursday, a joint team of security operatives raided Igboho’s residence at Soka Ibadan, Oyo State.
DSS spokesman, Peter Afunanya, at a press conference in Abuja last night, said the raid was based on intelligence that he had stockpiled arms in the place.
“On approach to the residence, the team came under heavy gun attack by nine men, suspected to be Igboho’s guards. Six of them were armed with AK-47 gun and three others, with Pump-Action rifles.
‘’In the course of the exchange, two of Igboho’s armed men were gunned down; while the rest were subdued and arrested.
‘’Only one operative, who was shot by the assailants on his right hand, sustained injury. He has, however, received medical attention and is very stable.’’
Afunanya said Igboho was currently on the run, saying the government would definitely track him down no matter where he ran to.
He said the team procedurally searched Igboho’s house and subsequently recovered some weapons.
“The gun duel which lasted for an hour offered Igboho the chance to escape. Sunday Adeyemo a.k.a Sunday Igboho is now on the run.
‘’Igboho may run as far as he can. He may hide as long as he wants. He might have attacked security operatives as his strength carried him. But this will be the end of his shenanigans.
‘’Soon, he will not have a hiding place. His strength will sure fail him. And the law will catch up with him. The law may be slow. But it will be steady.’’
‘’Consequently, Adeyemo Igboho is advised to turn himself in to the nearest security agency.
Those cheering and eulogising him may appeal to or advise him to do the needful.
‘’He should surrender himself to the appropriate authorities. He or anyone can never be above the law. Meanwhile, those arrested will be charged accordingly,’’ Afunnaya said.
He listed weapons recovered as: Seven AK-47 assault rifles; three Pump Action guns; 30 fully charged AK-47 magazines; 5,000 rounds of 7.62mm ammunition; five cutlasses, one jack knife, one pen knife; two pistol holsters; one binoculars; a wallet containing and $5 in one denomination, among other items.
He said aside the items recovered from the building, 13 suspects, including 12 males and one female, were arrested and brought to Abuja.
Meanwhile, Igboho yesterday indefinitely suspended the proposed Yoruba Nation ally slated for tomorrow in Lagos.
Igboho announced the suspension of the rally after an attack on his residence in Ibadan by suspected soldiers and operatives of the DSS which allegedly led to the killings of five people, including an Islamic cleric.
The Pan-Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere; the Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams and the Prof. Banji Akintoye-led Ilana Omo Oodua condemned the attack on Igboho’s house.
The “fatal attack”, according to Afenifere, “is a sad indicator that we’re fast returning to the era of Late Sani Abacha when anyone who expressed opinions contrary to the government’s position would be fatally attacked.”
A statement, on behalf of the acting leader of Afenifere, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, issued by the National Publicity Secretary of the body, Jare Ajayi, said the manner of the attack indicated culpability on the part of those in authority.
Afenifere regretted that the incident was a sad reminder of what Nigerians went through under the inglorious regime of late General Sani Abacha.
It called on the government to immediately apprehend the attackers and make them face the full wrath of the law.
“Government should also stop any plan to harm Igboho or any other person not known to contravene the law of the land,” it added.
Gani Adams, on his part, charged the Federal Government to bring the perpetrators to book, saying the attack was a ploy to silence him from expressing his views on the state of the nation.
Aare Adams, however, charged the Federal Government to investigate the circumstances surrounding the ugly incident.
Adams, in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Kehinde Aderemi, alleged that the attack had exposed the Federal Government, especially, on the spate of insecurity in Nigeria, insisting that the incident was a predetermined ploy to silence Igboho from the struggle for the Yoruba nation.
By Idowu Isamotu, Abdullateef Aliyu (Lagos) & Jeremiah Oke (Ibadan)