Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN) on Monday described the recent invasion of the Ibadan residence of Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo aka Sunday Igboho by Operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) as a nocturnal coup.
Falana condemned the action of the DSS operatives, noting that what they did is totally unbecoming of such a security organization.
Speaking on Monday during an appearance on Channels TV, the lawyer added that at a time when kidnappings and other violent crimes were rampant in the country, the DSS was wrong to have invaded Igboho’s residence in the dead of the night.
Naija News recalls Igboho’s residence was invaded last Thursday by the security operatives who claimed the Yoruba nation agitator was stockpiling weapons in his house.
Two of his aides were killed during the encounter while many others were arrested and taken to Abuja while Igboho himself escaped.
After the DSS paraded guns and other ammunition allegedly recovered from his house, Igboho had come out to deny ownership of such, stating that he uses local charms to protect himself.
Reacting to the entire saga, Falana on Monday said the DSS would have had a better stand if it obtained a search/arrest warrant for Igboho’s residence and not just invaded the place like common criminals.
He said: “There is no law in Nigeria that allows you to arrest somebody in the dead of the night when you are not planning a coup and you are not an armed robber.”
Falana added while speaking on the decision of the Southern governors in Lagos State on Monday that security agencies must notify them before they carry out any operation within their domain that though a right call, it is rather late.
“It is a decision that is coming rather late. Governors are chief security officers of their states in line with the constitution. Each state has a security council and the governor is the chairman,” he said.
On the DSS invasion, he stated that the federal government is leaving a legacy of military dictatorship in place.
According to him, “You can’t have a situation where nocturnal arrests are made in a state as if you are planning a coup. Take Ibadan for instance, the invasion of the home of Igboho happened in the night and for all-day, everybody was wondering who did and that seven people were killed. People were arrested and abducted at 2am, the governor of the state wasn’t aware. So, everybody was trying to find out, calling security agencies, only for the State Security Service to issue a very provocative statement after almost 12 hours to say, ‘We did it, we killed two people, we raided a house’. Somebody attempted to evade arrest and you killed two people? The governor of the state wasn’t aware?
“In these days of kidnappings, anybody can come to your house in the night and arrest you. And these are guys who don’t wear uniforms.”
“There is no provision, unless a crime is being committed in the night; you cannot go there and arrest. In this case, you are required by law to bring a search warrant. In this case, there was no search warrant, nobody took an inventory.
“Now, Sunday Adeyemo has said I didn’t have any gun in my house. Yet, the SSS paraded guns and other ammunition. All the controversies would have been unnecessary if the SSS had behaved like a modern, civilized agency.
“These are very dangerous legacies of military dictatorship in our country.”
Meanwhile, the Lagos House of Assembly has passed an amended version of the Criminal Justice Law of the state barring the police from parading suspects before the media.
Naija News reports that the bill was passed at a sitting presided over by the Deputy Speaker, Wasiu Eshilokun-Sanni, on behalf of the Speaker, Mudashiru Obasa.