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‘Minimum of 10 years in prison’ — penalty for charges levelled against Sunday Igboho

‘Minimum of 10 years in prison’ — penalty for charges levelled against Sunday Igboho
July 26
00:13 2021

Sunday Adeyemo, the Yoruba Nation activist popularly known as Sunday Igboho, will be appearing before the appeal court in Cotonou on Monday. But to answer for what charges exactly? 

TheCable is on ground in Cotonou to bring you live updates of all that will happen as regards the case. Before then, we bring you a quick update of all the charges levelled against him.

According to Igboho’s lawyers, the Nigerian government is yet to file for the extradition of the Yoruba youth leader. The activist who is said to have stayed within the laws in Benin was reported in court to have broken three major laws in Nigeria.

Here are the offences against Igboho and the corresponding penalty in Nigerian law:


Arms smuggling/trafficking

Igboho is charged with trafficking and possession of unlicenced arms and ammunition in Nigeria. This is a charge punishable by a minimum of 10 years imprisonment.

According to Nigeria’s Firearms Act, “where a person contrary to section 20 of this Act imports or causes to be imported firearms or ammunition by post or, contrary to section 21 of this Act, exports or causes to be exported any firearm or ammunition therein referred to, he is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than ten years”.

This is in addition to five-year imprisonment for illegal possession of firearms or ammunition and a fine of N1,000. The Act, however, adds that anyone found to have contravened this act “may be tried summarily in any part of Nigeria”.


Secession or Treason?

The Yoruba Nation activist has been accused of seeking to break away a certain part of the country from the rest of the state. The Nigerian laws are not entirely clear about what should be done to secessionists, therefore, the government often charges them with treason or promotion of inter-communal war.

“Any person who levies war against the State, in order to intimidate or overawe the President or the Governor of a State, is guilty of treason, and is liable to the punishment of death,” the criminal code act states.

“Any person who, without lawful authority, carries on, or makes preparation for carrying on, or aids in or advises the carrying on of, or preparation for, any war or warlike undertaking with, for, by, or against, any traditional chief, or with, for, by, or against any band of citizens, is guilty of a felony and is liable to imprisonment for life.”

It is unclear what exact allegations the Nigerian government is filing against Igboho in this case.


Inciting violence

The Yoruba youth leader has also been accused of inciting people to violence in his call for the freedom of his kin and kith.

The punishment for this offence is seven years in prison for felony, in line with the unlawful society chapter of the criminal code.

“Any person who manages or assists in the management of an unlawful society is guilty of a felony and is
liable to imprisonment for seven years,” the law reads.

Igboho has denied all the allegations levelled against him and his lawyers have said the government has no evidence to back up its claims.



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