Femi Falana (SAN) has said it was wrong for Yoruba activist, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, to ask Fulani herdsmen to vacate Ibarapa LGA of Oyo State.
Recall that Sunday Igboho had last week alongside his supporters stormed the Fulani settlement in Igangan to eject Seriki Fulani, Salihu Abdukadir, and the herders after the expiration of a quit notice he issued to them.
Speaking to the BBC on Wednesday, Femi Falana disclosed that Fulani herdsmen can approach the court to challenge the illegal quit notice issued to them by Sunday Igboho.
According to the human rights lawyer, some of the evicted herders had lived in Ibarapaland for many years and have the constitutional rights to do so.
Falana said, “With profound respect under our laws, even a squatter cannot be ejected and that is why on a daily basis, tenants are given quit notices by landlords or owners of properties.
“So, a private citizen cannot wake up and say anybody should leave the community, you must embrace the rule of law. Nobody can do that, not even the government because section 43 of the constitution says every citizen shall have the right to own and acquire properties in any parts of the country.
“The campaign of the human rights community is that if you are born in a place, or you have lived for not less than ten years in any part of the country, you should be considered an indigene and be entitled to all the rights and privileges of the so-called indigenes of the state. So, for me, there is no way I can embrace anyone who has given quit notice to any group of people.”
He however stated that criminal elements must be arrested and prosecuted without an entire ethnic group being labelled as criminal.
“We must stop the idea of criminal profiling. If anybody has committed an offence or a group of people has committed an offence, we must fish them out and have them tried under the law but you can’t wake up and say all Yoruba people, all Hausa people are criminals, all Igbo people are criminals. No, it is a fallacy of generalisation,” he noted.