Why I’m proud of Sunday Igboho – Prof Banji Akintoye says ahead of new book on Yoruba activist

A new book title Sunday Igboho, the making of Yoruba Generalisimo will soon be published on Yoruba activist, Mr Sunday Igboho

The book reflects on his life and times and his new found activism for Yoruba Nation. Irohinoodua here presents the forward to the book;

By Prof Banji Akintoye

One evening in early December 2020, a highly regarded young man visited me at my home in Magodo, Lagos. I had heard some stories before about Sunday Igboho. This first visit of his to me was short – my living room was crowded that evening and there was no space for any serious discussion. But in those few minutes that he and I kept talking together, both of us became very strongly bonded together, and I was sure that I had found the youth captain of our struggle.
After he left, there followed much talking about him. Some of those present thought he would come back, while some others thought he would not. But, strangely, I had no doubt whatsoever. that he would return and that he was a God-ordained giant among us and a leader of our youths. In the next few days, he called me a few times. And after I relocated to Ile-Ife in early January 2021, he came to visit me there. His passionate love for our Yoruba people was obvious in his every word. Nobody needed to convince him. It was obvious to me that he bore the commission of God Almighty to go forth and liberate his Yoruba people from Fulani atrocities and separate his Yoruba nation from Nigeria, a country in which the very existence of the Yoruba nation was in extremely serious jeopardy.
I can say that, from the day he came to see me in Magodo, Lagos – and can even say that before that day – he had fully entered into the Yoruba security and self-determination struggle. His entry,publicly into the struggle happened in an earth-shaking manner. His place of birth in Yorubaland, the northwestern province of the Yoruba homeland, the area of Yewa, Ibarapa and Oke-Ogun, has always been a peaceful rural area and the home of hard-working and highly productive farmers. About 2010, a certain citizen of the province named Fatai Aborode returned home from many years of study abroad with a Ph.D. degree, and started a large modern farm. At the peak of the success of the farm by 2020, it employed as many as 320 workers with various fields of competence. From 2015, large numbers of the Fulani began to descend on the area, killing, maiming, raping, kidnapping, extorting ransom, destroying farms, farmsteads and villages, horribly wrecking all peace and security, and forcing many farmers to abandon farming altogether. These Fulani killers and destroyers even had a coordinator, their appointed chieftain with the title of Seriki. Their reign of terror was so fierce that even the Yoruba Obas of the area lived in fear of the Seriki. When they kidnapped the daughter of one of the Obas, the Oba could do nothing other than to find money to ransom his daughter. On December 11, 2020, some of the Fulani ambushed Dr. Aborode’s car on the public road near his farm, killed him, and fiendishly mutilated his body.
In the public outcry that followed, the young man named Sunday Igboho decided to do something about the situation. When he came to visit me in Ile-Ife in early January, 2021, he was incredibly saddened and furious over the Fulani killing of Dr. Borode.
On January 22, 2021, taking some youths with him from his home in Ibadan, and responsibly asking for police escort for himself and his group, he headed for the town of Igangan, the reported headquarters of the Fulani Seriki. Along the villages on his way, large crowds of youths arose and joined his group – and so too did many policemen. By the time he reached Igangan, his following had swollen to over 3000 youths.
He found the Seriki surrounded by his guard of many Fulani militiamen, all armed with AK47 rifles. As he stood before the Seriki, one of the Seriki’s guards suddenly shot at him at point-blank range. But he waved the shot aside and proceeded calmly to address the Seriki. He informed the Seriki that the people of the area wanted all the Fulani to leave their area, in the interest of peace. There was no violence in his words or actions, and some of the policemen were observing what was happening. The Seriki, surrounded by his many heavily armed Fulani guards, was manifestly awed – he could see that it would be senseless to argue with Sunday Igboho and his enormous crowd of youths.
Before Sunday Igboho left the Seriki’s presence, he gave the Seriki a firm notice that the Seriki and his crowds of Fulani killers and destroyers must leave the province within seven days. And when he came back seven days later with his large following of youths, the Seriki and his Fulani marauders had fled from the province.
Sunday Igboho became an instant national hero among his Yoruba people. He became instantly the leader of the enormous millions of Yoruba youths struggling for Yoruba security and self-determination.
And I, as father of these countless millions, can testify by day or night that Sunday Igboho deserves the love, the loyalty, and the adoration that he is always given among his people at home and in the Diaspora. His own loyalty to the struggle is almost superhuman. He has lost a lot in the course of the struggle – his cousin and friend were killed by the agents of Nigeria in his house in Ibadan, his house and cars were destroyed in Ibadan by the agents of Nigeria, aside his detention in Benin Republic for about two years without being accused of any crime at the request of Nigeria,and the consequent destruction of his businesses. You can never hear him lament these losses. On the contrary, he commonly says that all the assets in his life are gifts given him by God, and that since God has allowed that they be taken away from him, his dutiful response is one of praise to God. In fact, Sunday has said that if he had known early on in his younger years that the Almighty God planned to call him to this great service to his Yoruba people, he would have chosen not to marry or have children at all, because having no wife or children would have freed him to pursue the struggle with a lighter personal burden and without fears about wife and children.
Yes, Sunday Igboho is a very special gift of God to the Yoruba people in the awful and hugely challenging circumstances of today. Having him by my side, and hearing the words from his mouth, enormously strengthen my faith that God is strongly behind us in this Yoruba struggle, and that God will see us to total fulfillment of our goal – soon, very soon.

May I also commend the authors, Messers Kolawole Ilori and Olatunde Amusat for a job-well done. It couldn’t have been otherwise given their status on professionalism, antecedents, keen sense of history and their dedication to issues concerning the Yoruba Nation.
I recommend this book to all lovers of freedom and social justice .
I am personally proud to be associated with this output.

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