I would have encouraged Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, to avoid interviews, maintain his composure, and be content with the momentary freedom he is currently enjoying as he travels to Germany if I had seen him when he was released from Beninese custody. I will simply advise him to remember the July 1, 2021 incident and show respect for the lives of those who died in the altercation with security forces that allowed him to flee the house, including those who were detained for months after being arrested.
However, it appears that the well-liked Ibadan big guy has not grown from his mistakes. Following the self-determination activist’s release from Beninese custody, it is anticipated that he will remain composed, learn from his mistakes, ignore unjustified or exaggerated compliments that have previously betrayed him, and concentrate on his immediate family, businesses, and ways to settle outstanding matters with the federal government so that he can pay his final respects to his biological mother.
The difficulties that Sunday Igboho faces are not new. He is not the first Yoruba or Nigerian to experience such ordeal at the hands of the Federal Government, but it is puzzling why he cares more about celebrity status than his own freedom and safety. He is accused of importing weapons, inciting violence, and advocating the independence of the Yoruba from the Nigerian state. The self-determination activist would serve at least ten years in prison if these charges are successfully prosecuted with evidence.
Oladipo Diya, who passed away, suffered a great deal at the hands of the Federal government, just as Sunday Igboho. He was charged with organizing a coup to depose his late boss, Gen. Sani Abacha. Late Diya was unlucky, unlike Sunday Igboho. Prior to being apprehended, he was unable to flee to the Benin Republic. He was imprisoned, convicted in a military court, and sentenced to death along with his accomplices. The Yoruba power structure abandoned and betrayed him. Oladipo Diya, fortunately, subsequently received a pardon from Abdusalami Abubakar, the late Head of State’s successor.
Late Oladipo Diya, however, was distinct. He successfully obtained his pardon and was able to shun fame and power. The astute Diya responded in an interview when asked if, upon his release, he would run for office in the 1999 election, “I will continue to run my law firm and also use loan I got from the government to set up a plastic and vegetable oil producing plants.” He valued life more than celebrity, and he was concerned about his family’s well-being. Oladipo Diya, Nigeria’s deputy president from 1993 to 1997, believed that living a good life was more essential than fame and influence. After almost dining with the grim reaper, he withdrew from politics and the power circle.
What connection exists between Sunday Adeyemo and the late Oladipo Diya? For contrasting an army general and former vice president of Nigeria with a self-determination activist who gained notoriety through political violence and neighborhood gangsterism, some Nigerians would have my head chopped off. If we overlook character profiling, I believe there are a few similarities between the two, even if I try to appease individuals I have upset.
Both individuals—Yorubas—engaged in various efforts that ultimately led to the freedom of the Yoruba race. Due to the intervention of the Abdulsalam-led dictatorship, the late Oladipo Diya was able to survive, while Sunday Igboho managed to avoid capture and survived the shootout his boys had with security personnel. After serving more than a year in prison, the late Diya received a pardon, while Igboho spent two years sentence in Benin after being found guilty of illegal immigration and questionable collusion with immigration officials.
When you look at Sunday Adeyemo, better known by his stage name Sunday Igboho, and the videos he has appeared in since being freed by the Benin Republic, you will see a guy who has not grown from his mistakes. The same individuals who introduced and used him for struggle that made him flee the country have not changed their tactics.
He is still being held captive by his halleluyah boys and others who gain financially from his stumbles and defiance of the law. I saw a video of him canvassing for Yoruba Nation with a scoundrel in Germany. His wild outbursts, which are characterized by purposeful ignorance and illiteracy, have not helped matters, nor have influencers who use him to expand their sites. People who take advantage of his lack of education and exposure to beneficial influences have woken up too.
I don’t envy Sunday Igboho. I feel sorry for him. It’s clear that he’s grown more mature because he no longer speaks recklessly. He clearly hasn’t learnt anything in custody if he’s still canvassing for Yoruba Nation as a runaway. It genuinely annoys me that Igboho, despite being on the run, continues to give interviews about secession to media outlets. Sunday Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, has never had a better opportunity to learn than right now. He should study the past of the late Oladipo Diya if he didn’t learn anything while being held in Benin. The time has come for Igboho to be quiet, remain at home with his family, expand his businesses, and settle disputes with the federal government.
Igboho needs to realize that he is not exceptional. He is not the Nelson Mandela of the Yoruba. Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for resisting the apartheid government in South Africa, while Igboho was imprisoned in the Benin Republic for illegal immigration. He is not qualified to be the largest black race’s Thomas Shankara. Shankara was a revolutionary idol rather than the agitator of a crowd with no clear aim. The people who view Igboho as more than just a byproduct of political thuggery and give him compliments that he never merited are his real adversaries and want him dead.
Sunday Igboho must stop participating in discussions that portray him as a demi-god or leave groups that give him authority over things he is not entitled to because they seek to use him as a political pawn. The encounter he had with security personnel revealed that he is nowhere close to having the powers he claimed to have. We do not need to lose young people over an impractical secession idea. Igboho doesn’t need to keep his wives and kids in constant fear over a conflict with no clear strategy.
He needs to decompress, settle down, and devote more time to his personal life. He is limited to becoming his wives’ husband and the father of his own children. He needs to keep his mouth under control to avoid saying something that could undermine his case. Let Sunday Adeyemo, better known as Igboho, know that he is not the Yoruba version of James Bond if you run into him. He is nothing more than a tool in the hands of those who exploit others. He is unfit in every ramifications to represent the interest of the Yoruba. Baba Dami as fondly called should ‘calm down’.