Traditional worshippers under the aegis of the International Council For Ifa Religion have condemned what they described as the unlawful arrest and detention of a popular Isese devotee and activist, Adegbola Abdulazeez, popularly known as Talolorun, calling for his immediate release.
The group argued that Nigeria is a circular nation in which every religion should be respected, have freedom of worship, and have tolerance for each other.
Recall that Talolorun was arrested in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital, on August 16 and taken to Sanyo Police Station before being whisked away to Ilorin, Kwara State, by the team from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), Area Command, Ilorin.
It was also gathered that on August 17, he was arraigned for defamation, and consequently, the presiding judge ordered his remand in a correctional centre for 50 days.
Talolorun was reportedly arrested for insulting the Emir of Ilorin, among other offences.
But in a statement issued on Sunday in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital, by the International Council For Ifa Religion and signed by Araba Agbaye, High Chief Owolabi Aworeni condemned the action, saying it was an act of supporting one religion against another.
According to the statement, “Taniolorun was arrested in Ibadan on August 16 and first taken to the Sanyo Police Station before being whisked away to the Police Station in Ilorin. On August 17, he was charged in court for defamation, and the judge ordered his remand in a correctional centre for 50 days.
“Nigeria is a circular state; every religion should be respected and have freedom of worship, but in Ilorin and a few other states, the reverse is the case.
“Isese devotees are peace-loving people; we are not troublemakers; we simply wanted to celebrate our festivals but were stopped and asked to seek permission.
When Muslims want to celebrate Sallah, do they need permission to do this as well? Why demand such things from Isese worshippers?
“Because Talolorun was calling for support for Isese, he was framed as having defamed the Emir; some were saying he burned the Quran, which is far from the truth.
“We are using this medium to call for his immediate release to avoid the religious crisis, which is already heating up.
Two religions are having issues, and the law enforcement agency is supporting the other.
This is a violation of human rights and freedom of worship.
“We are calling on stakeholders to call the police authority in Kwara to order and facilitate the release of Talolorun before this degenerates into an avoidable religious crisis”.
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