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29 Yoruba Nation agitators arraigned, remanded, Oyo demolishes base

29 Yoruba Nation agitators arraigned, remanded, Oyo demolishes base

The Oyo State Police Command, on Wednesday, arraigned the 29 Yoruba Nation agitators who invaded the state government secretariat in Agodi, Ibadan last Saturday.

This was as the state government, also on Wednesday, demolished a building where the Yoruba Nation agitators, led by Modupe Onitiri-Abiola, were said to be operating from.

The building is said to be located on Toye Oyesola Street in the Ibadan South West Local Government Area of the state.

READ ALSO: Presidency Expresses Discomfort with Collaboration between IPOB, Yoruba Nation at UN Headquarters

Governor Seyi Makinde’s special adviser on security matters, Fatai Owoseni, a retired Commissioner of Police, confirmed the demolition of the building.

“You can get more details from the Commissioner of Police,” Owoseni added.

The Yoruba Nation agitators, who are pushing for the breakaway of Yoruba people from the Federal Republic of Nigeria, had last Saturday stormed the Oyo State Government secretariat, wearing military camouflage and armed with guns, attempting to hoist their flag on the premises of the state House of Assembly.

READ ALSO: Police Disperse Yoruba Nation Protesters, Kill One in Lagos

They were, however, overpowered by security forces and arrested.

On Monday, the Oyo State Police Command paraded 21 of the agitators, some of whom said they did not regret their actions, insisting that their push to break away from Nigeria was legitimate.

The Oyo State Government, however, described their action as terrorism.

On Wednesday, the police took 29 arrested agitators before the Oyo State Magistrates’Court in Iyaganku, where they were confronted with seven counts, bordering on “treasonable felony, unlawful society, illegal possession of firearms, and conduct likely to cause the breach of peace.”

The charge, marked Mi/520c/2024, was before a chief magistrate, O.O. Ogunkanmi, who ordered that the agitators be remanded in prison custody till August 1, 2024.

Among the 29 agitators taken to court were five females: Ayanwale Rofiat, 25; Abiona Esther, 78; Omoyajowo Funsho, 64; Tola Olufemi, 60; and Taiwo Titilayo, 58.

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The male defendants were Ismaila Adepoju, 45; Ayanwale Saburi, 28; Adeola Elegbede, 27; Fatoki Anthony, 34; Olalere Mathew, 54; Isaac Friday, 27; Ismaila Peter, 65; Farumbi Wasiu, 30; Muritala Abefe, 40; Adeyemo Joseph, 29; Adeyemo Peter, 75; Adesokan Hameed, 37; Adejumo Lateef, 60; and Ogundeji Alabi, 55.

Others were Ayoola David, 40; Ojo Olufemi, 52; Ajani Ezekiel, 42; Amos Ogundeji, 45; Ademola Adeniyi, 29; Salaudeen Wahab, 56; Dosumu Toyin; Oritola Alabi; Kayode Fakeye, 45, and Yusuf Adebayo, 67.

The Investigative Police Officer, Bakare Rasaq of the Criminal Investigation Department, Iyaganku, Ibadan, said the Yoruba Nation agitators acted contrary to and were liable to punishment under Section 516 of the Criminal Code, Cap 38, Vol.II, Laws of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000.

However, the plea of the defendants was not taken.

The Magistrate, while adjourning the matter till August 1, ordered that the agitators be remanded in the prison custody.

The charges filed against the defendants read: “The defendants and others now at large, on April 13, 2024, at about 8:30 a.m., at the Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan, in the Ibadan Magisterial District, did conspire with one another to commit felony to wit: treasonable felony, unlawful society, going armed and conduct likely to cause a breach of the peace and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 516 of the Criminal Code, Cap 38, Vol. II, Laws of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000.

“On the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district did unlawfully form an intention and manifest the intention to forcefully remove the democratically elected Executive Governor of the state, Seyi Makinde, during his term of office by invading the Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan with arms and declaring the birth of Yoruba Nation and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 41(b) of the Criminal Code, Cap 38, Vol. II, Laws of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000.

“That the defendants and others at large, on the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district did unlawfully belong to a group of people declaring the birth of Yoruba Nation, which is an unlawful society and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 62 and punishable under Section 64 of the Criminal Code Cap 38, Vol. II, Laws of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000.

“That the defendants and others at large, on the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district did unlawfully go armed in the public with guns, cutlasses, charms and knives without lawful occasion in such a manner as to cause terror to the Executive Governor of the state, Makinde and the public and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 80 of the Criminal Code, Cap 38, Vol. II, Laws of Oyo State of Nigeria, 2000.

“That the defendants and others at large, on the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district did conduct yourselves in a manner likely to cause a breach of the peace by going armed in the public and declaring the Yoruba Nation and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 249 (d) of the Criminal Code, Cap 38, Vol. II, Laws of Oyo of Nigeria, 2000.

READ ALSO: Group Says July 3 ‘Yoruba Nation’ Rally Will Bring Liberation

“That the defendants and others at large, on the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district did conspire with one another to commit felony to wit: unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 6(b) of the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions) Act, Cap RII, Vol. 14, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

“That the defendants and others at large, on the same date, time and place in the aforementioned magisterial district did unlawfully have in your possession five English Pump Action guns, three locally made barrel guns, 405 rounds of live cartridges and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 3 of the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions) Act, Cap RII, Vol. 14, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.”

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