Yoruba leaders have condemned a purported plan to arrest Yoruba activist, Mr Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, through an invitation letter dispatched to him from Abuja by the Inspector General of Police.
Adeyemo had said he neither accepted the letter, which was sent to him on Thursday via a courier service and a copy of the letter meant to be delivered by about 15 police officers, nor honoured the invitation.
In a statement by his media aide, Olayomi Koiki, Igboho said that he did not receive the letter for safety reasons, citing the death of foremost journalist, Dele Giwa, via a mail bomb explosion in 1986.
Two foremost Yoruba groups, Afenifere and the Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE), took exception to the action of the IGP which they described as abnormal and unjustifiable.
Also, Afenifere leader, Pa Ayo Adebanjo, described the letter as showing that Nigeria is under civilian dictatorship, the Secretary General of the YCE, Dr Kunle Olajide, wondered why leaders of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN) who he said had repeatedly insulted law and decency have not been so invited by the Inspector Genral of Police.
Pa Adebanjo, in an interview with Nigerian Tribune, recalled a similar incident that led to the death of Giwa who received a letter without knowing it contained a bomb.
He explained that Igboho’s refusal to accept the invitation letter was understandable as this is a perilous time.
Pa Adebanjo said: “The action shows that Nigeria is under civilian dictatorship under Buhari. “What is the letter for? That was how they sent a letter with a bomb to Dele Giwa.
“We are not in a normal situation at all. This is a time where people die without any traces. So, there is the need for people to be careful.”
He advised Igboho to be vigilant, stating that he had the right to pursue what is right in a democratic setting.
When contacted for confirmation of the story, the Oyo State Police Public Relations Officer, CSP Olugbenga Fadeyi, said that the state Police Command had nothing to do with the letter of invitation from the Nigeria Police Force.
The PPRO said that information reaching the state command had it that the invitation was from the Force Criminal Investigation Department in Abuja, which, it was learnt, was rejected by Igboho.