#SARSMUSTEND: Youths Have Been Taken For Granted In The Past, Says Gov Abiodun

File Photo of Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun

 

Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun says Nigerian leaders must ensure a paradigm shift on matters concerning the youths, saying that leaders had always taken the youths for granted in the time past and for too long.

He disclosed this on Wednesday in Abeokuta when addressing the #ENDSARS campaigners who marched on his office in a peaceful protest at Oke-Mosan in the state capital.

“I think that in times past, we have sort of taken you for granted and I am saying that with all sense of responsibility,” Governor Abiodun said.

“We have taken our youths for granted because the issues you are raising today are not new to us. They are issues we have been living with for so many years.”

The governor said that the Federal government had no choice but to listen to the voice of the protesters, adding that the Nigeria Police and other security services need to put a stop to the brutalities being experienced across the country.

“The youths have a voice that must be given attention. The whole country has listened to you. As a matter of fact, the whole world is listening to you.

“You have demonstrated commitment, you have shown that you can rise up when the occasion warrant it and you can speak out,” he added.

READ ALSO: Protests Continue, Nigerians Demand #EndSWAT

He, however, appealed to the youths to give the government a chance to start implementing the needed reforms of the Force, noting that their action was an indication that they are citizens whose voices matter.

“Really, you have succeeded and I think what you have to do is to allow us to begin to see the implementation of these reforms. You know the implementation will not be instant because it will take time for them to be visible.

“I want to plea with you, let us give these reforms a chance to work. Let us try and see how to wind down these protests.

“You have the right to protest anytime as no one can take that away from you. What we must ask ourselves is, is the government committed, have they shown symbolism? I believe government symbolism.”

While acknowledging that there has been a breakdown of trust between the government and the citizens, the governor explained that for it to be restored, citizens must trust their government to do what was right at all times.

Governor Abiodun said he has identified with the pains of the protesters and as their representative, it was imperative he act on their feedback, assuring that he and his colleagues were deliberating on how to ensure that their voice was not only heard, but demands were met.

He said the government would not charge those arrested in the course of the protest as he has ordered the release of those arrested for vandalizing a police station and his Deputy’s car by the security agents.

#SARSMUSTEND: We Hear Promises But We Need To See Actions Taken – Tacha

 

A former Big Brother Naija housemate, Anita Natacha Akide says the government must go beyond the rhetorics and take steps in tackling issues raised by #SARSMUSTEND protesters in the country. 

“At the moment, we have given the government time. We are all in Nigeria; we hear promises; we need to see actions being taken. Legit action being taken,” the ex-BBNaija housemate fondly called Tacha told Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Wednesday.

“I understand it is not going to happen overnight. There are certain procedures; there are certain stages to how all of this stuff can be achieved.

“At the same time, it is promises that we get to hear. We need to see action, actually. And trust me, the youths are not leaving the streets until we see action.”

READ ALSO: [#SARSMUSTEND] Presidential Panel Approves Five-Point Demand By Protesters

A file photo of protestors carrying a placard reading “Special Anti-Robbery Squad SARS Are Authorised Criminals” during a demonstration calling for the scrapping of the controversial police unit, in Ikeja, on October 8, 2020.

 

– ‘We Need Justice’ – 

While calling for justice for those who were killed during the protests which have continued to gather steam despite the ban on the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Tacha admitted that the victims could have been anyone.

“It could have been anybody,” she lamented, reiterating calls for the reformation of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), and government’s implementation of the demands made by the agitators.

“Those officers need to be brought to the book. The police force needs to be reformed; we need justice for the lives that have been lost. We are not leaving the streets anytime soon, I think so.

“We have our demands and we need the government to start working on them.”

SARS Dissolved 

 

 

On Sunday, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, had disbanded SARS, bowing to the demands of Nigerians who called for the scrapping of the tactical unit of the force.

“The Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Nigerian Police, otherwise known as SARS, is hereby dissolved across all formations, the 36 state police command and the Federal Capital Territory where they currently exist,” the police chief said.

“All officers and men currently serving in the unit are to be redeployed with immediate effect.”

A file photo of ex-BBNaija housemate, ‘Tacha.

 

READ ALSO: [#EndSars] Young Nigerian Jimoh Isiaq Killed In Ogbomosho, Seven Others Injured

But despite the ban and the introduction of the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) to tackle crimes in Nigeria, the protests have continued in several parts of the country.

READ ALSO: IGP Sets Up New Unit, SWAT To Replace SARS

The protesters have rejected the new unit of the police force, and have vowed not to back down in their demands until they are implemented.

 

‘Reform The Police’: Eagles Legend Kanu Backs #SARSMUSTEND Protests

alausa-protest.jpg2
#SARSMUSTEND protesters in Alausa, Ikeja.

 

 

Former Super Eagles captain Kanu Nwankwo has endorsed the #SARSMUSTEND protests sweeping through the country, calling for the reformation of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF). 

The former Arsenal forward in a video on his Twitter handle on Tuesday, however, called on the protesters to be cautious and ensure they are safe.

“Please! Please!! Please!!! If you are on the street protesting, please be safe,” the Atlanta 1996 Olympic gold medalist and former Ajax Amsterdam player, added.

“No more lives lost. One love, one Nigeria. EndSARS and reform the police. God bless us all.”

 

Although the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu had dissolved the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), an arm of the force, the protesters have continued to take to the streets.

Obviously irked by the announcement of a new unit to replace SARS, the protests which began over a week under the #ENDSARS banner, have recently morphed into #SARSMUSTEND and #ENDSWAT.

A file photo: Demonstrators hold placards while they stand on the road to protest against abuses by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) at the Lekki toll Plaza in Lagos, on October 12, 2020. PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP

 

A presidential panel on Tuesday approved the demands of #SARSMUSEND protesters, including halting the use of force against protesters and the unconditional release of arrested citizens.

Five-Point Demand

The five-point demands of the protesters were okayed at a forum convened by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, and the National Human Rights Commission, with stakeholders, a statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, said.

It was a multi-stakeholders’ forum attended by leaders and representatives of civil society organisations in Nigeria, activists from the entertainment industry, and the #ENDSARS movement and development partners.

Across several cities in Africa’s most populous nation, the protesters have blocked major routes, leaving many stranded.

In Nigeria’s commercial centre, the agitators blocked the ever-busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, the Lekki Expressway and other routes, vowing not to backtrack on their requests.

A similar situation is equally playing out in the nation’s seat of power, Abuja. They also assembled at the entrance of the Ministry of Justice and displayed placards demanding justice for slain victims of police brutality.

#SARSMustEnd: Presidential Panel Approves Five-Point Demand By Protesters

Lagos Lawyers protest seek reforms in the Nigerian Police Force

 

A presidential panel on Tuesday approved the demands of #SARSMUSEND protesters, including halting the use of force against protesters and the unconditional release of arrested citizens.

The five-point demands of the protesters were okayed at a forum convened by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, and the National Human Rights Commission, with stakeholders, a statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, said.

It was a multi-stakeholders’ forum attended by leaders and representatives of civil society organisations in Nigeria, activists from the entertainment industry, and the ENDSARS movement and development partners.

A communiqué issued at the end of the meeting read in part “The Forum collectively: welcomed the dissolution of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu; Reaffirmed the constitutional rights of Nigerians to peaceful assembly and protest; Further affirmed the sanctity of life of every Nigerian and the role of the Police in protecting this right; Affirms that the five-point demands of the protesters and the ENDSARS movement are genuine concerns and will be addressed by the Government.’’

The communiqué was signed by the Inspector-General of Police and Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission, Tony Ojukwu.

Tuesday’s decision comes on the back of continued protests across the country, despite the dissolution of SARS by the IGP on Sunday.

Beyond agreeing to the demands of the protesters, the forum said the dissolution of SARS presented an opportunity to embark on comprehensive reforms aimed at repositioning the Nigerian Police Force as a modern, responsive and citizens-centred law enforcement organisation.

“The Forum further noted that the proposed reforms should be anchored under the basis of the White Paper on the Report of the Presidential Panel on the Reform of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad which was jointly authored by the National Human Rights Commission, the Federal Ministry of Justice, and the Nigeria Police Force,” the communique said.

“The Forum affirms that reform proposals for the Nigerian Police Force will be based on the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and existing legislations such as the Nigeria Police Act, 2020, the Nigeria Police Trust Fund Act, 2019, the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 the Anti-Torture Act, 2017, and the National Human Rights Commission Act, 2010 amongst others.”



Part of the demands of the protesters was an investigation into human rights violations against SARS operatives, including killings, and the brutalisation of protesters.

This was also addressed in the communique.

“The Forum welcomed the proposal to set up an Independent Investigation Panel to look into the violations of human rights by the defunct SARS and other segments of the Nigerian Police,” it said.

“The Forum agrees to the setting up of this Independent Panel by the National Human Rights Commission within the next one week. An open call for Memoranda from members of the public whose rights have been violated by the defunct SARS and other segments of the Police will be released by the Commission within one week.”

It also addressed calls for the retraining of SARS operatives before they are redeployed, saying, “The Forum recommends the psychological evaluation, training and retraining of disbanded SARS officials prior to re-deployment.”

“The Forum resolves to set up the following Technical Sub-Committees to design an implementation roadmap and work plan for the implementation of the White Paper: Training, Capacity, and Re-orientation; Logistics: Infrastructure, Communications, and Technology; Arrest, Detention, and Investigations; Regulations, Oversight and Accountability and Financing and Partnerships.’’

The communiqué stated that sub-Committees will be supported by the National Human Rights Commission and other civil society organisations.

Those who attended the meeting are: Dr Kole Shettima- MAC Arthur Foundation; Innocent Chukwuma – Ford Foundation; Jude Ilo- of OSIWA;  Segun Awosanya (Segalinks) – End Sars Movement;  Yemi Adamolekun- Enough is Enough; Clément Nwankwo- PLAC; Rafsanjani- CISLAC; Kemi Okonyedo-  PWAN; YZ – CITAD; Folarin Falana Falz; Prof Deji Adekunle –NIALS;  Chris Ngwodo, SSA to President Research & Policy;  Dr Fatima Waziri – Rule of Law Adviser OVP and Abdulrahman Yakubu – NHRC Secretariat.

Others are: Hilary Ogbonna- NHRC secretariat; Halilu Adamu – NHRC Secretariat; Ben Aguh – NHRC secretariat; Dr Uju Agomuoh – PRAWA and Onyinye Ndubuisi – UNDP.

The Ministry of Police Affairs and Police Service Commission were also present at the meeting. 

 

Read the full statement by Mr Adesina below:

RELEASE
PRESIDENTIAL PANEL ON POLICE REFORMS SWINGS INTO ACTION, OKAYS 5-POINT DEMAND OF PROTESTERS

Following directives by President Muhammadu Buhari on dissolution of Special Anti-Robbery Squad and immediate response to yearnings of citizens, the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, convened a meeting with stakeholders, agreeing to meet demands, which include halting use of force against protesters and unconditional release of arrested citizens.

The meeting, organized by the Office of the Inspector General of Police and National Human Rights Commission, was a multi-stakeholders’ forum attended by leaders and representatives of civil society organisations in Nigeria, activists from the entertainment industry and the ENDSARS movement and development partners.

The Ministry of Police Affairs and Police Service Commission were also present at the meeting that affirmed that the five-point demands of the protesters and the ENDSARS movement are genuine concerns and will be addressed by the Government.

A communiqué of Stakeholders’ Meeting on the Implementation of the Recommendations of the Presidential Panel on the Reform of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) said:

“Following the public protests regarding various forms of human rights violations by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) and the consequent disbandment of the unit by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, there arose the need for stakeholder engagement to build trust and restore public confidence in law enforcement.

“The agitations also brought to the fore, the need to implement the recommendations of the Presidential Panel on the Reform of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

“The Forum was addressed by the Inspector General of Police and the Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission.

“The Forum collectively: welcomed the dissolution of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu; Reaffirmed the constitutional rights of Nigerians to peaceful assembly and protest; Further affirmed the sanctity of life of every Nigerian and the role of the Police in protecting this right; Affirms that the five-point demands of the protesters and the ENDSARS movement are genuine concerns and will be addressed by the Government.’’

According to the communiqué signed by the Inspector General of Police and Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission, Tony Ojukwu, Esq, the Forum noted that the dissolution of SARS presents an opportunity to embark on comprehensive reforms aimed at repositioning the Nigerian Police Force as a modern, responsive and citizens-centred law enforcement organisation.

“The Forum further notes that the proposed reforms should be anchored under the basis of the White Paper on the Report of the Presidential Panel on the Reform of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad which was jointly authored by the National Human Rights Commission, the Federal Ministry of Justice, and the Nigeria Police Force.

“The Forum affirms that reform proposals for the Nigerian Police Force will be based on Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and existing legislations such as the Nigeria Police Act, 2020, the Nigeria Police Trust Fund Act, 2019, the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 the Anti-Torture Act, 2017, and the National Human Rights Commission Act, 2010 amongst others.

“Following the dissolution of SARS, the Forum calls for the following immediate steps to be taken in restoring public confidence and trust in the Police: An order by the Inspector General of Police to all State Commands to halt the use of force against protesters; Unconditional release of arrested protesters and citizens; Open communication and outreach to citizens to establish trust and confidence and a roadmap for the implementation of the White Paper of the Presidential Panel on the Reform of the SARS.

“The Forum welcomed the proposal to set up an Independent Investigation Panel to look into the violations of human rights by the defunct SARS and other segments of the Nigerian Police. The Forum agrees to the setting up of this Independent Panel by the National Human Rights Commission within the next one week. An open call for Memoranda from members of the public whose rights have been violated by the defunct SARS and other segments of the Police will be released by the Commission within one week.

“The Forum recommends the psychological evaluation, training and retraining of disbanded SARS officials prior to re-deployment. The Forum resolves to set up the following Technical Sub-Committees to design an implementation roadmap and work plan for the implementation of the White Paper: Training, Capacity and Re-orientation; Logistics: Infrastructure, Communications and Technology; Arrest, Detention, and Investigations; Regulations, Oversight and Accountability and Financing and Partnerships.’’

The communiqué stated that sub-Committees will be supported by the National Human Rights Commission and other civil society organisations.

Those who attended the meeting are: Dr Kole Shettima- MAC Arthur Foundation; Innocent Chukwuma – Ford Foundation; Jude Ilo- of OSIWA; Segun Awosanya(segalinks) – End Sars Movement; Yemi Adamolekun- Enough is Enough; Clément Nwankwo- PLAC; Rafsanjani- CISLAC; Kemi Okonyedo- PWAN; YZ – CITAD; Folarin Falana Falz; Prof Deji Adekunle –NIALS; Chris Ngwodo, SSA to President Research & Policy; Dr Fatima Waziri – Rule of Law Adviser OVP and Abdulrahman Yakubu – NHRC Secretariat.

Others are: Hilary Ogbonna- NHRC secretariat; Halilu Adamu – NHRC Secretariat; Ben Aguh – NHRC secretariat; Dr Uju Agomuoh – PRAWA and Onyinye Ndubuisi – UNDP.

Femi Adesina
Special Adviser to the President
(Media & Publicity)
October 13, 2020

 

#SARSMustEnd Protests: NBA Condemns Use Of Live Ammunition By Police

The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has condemned the use of live ammunition by the Nigeria Police in the ongoing protests against police brutality in the country.

Speaking during a press conference on Tuesday in Abuja, NBA President, Olumide Akpata, said the use of live bullet will only aggravate the already tensed situation in the country.

“Under no circumstances should the use of live ammunition against peaceful and lawful protesters be tolerated,” he said.

“Those found culpable must be apprehended and made examples of in the wake of the protests that have resurrected the consciousness of the Nigerian society and indeed the international community to these very important and systemic issues.

“The NBA is convinced that the disbandment of SARS or any other unit by whatever name called, reposting or transferring officers of any disbanded unit and other reactions will only scratch the surface and not offer long-lasting solutions to the endemic issues bedevilling the Nigeria Police as currently constituted.”

Speaking further, Akpata called on the Federal Government and state governments to protect the rights of citizens participating in peaceful protests across the country.

In doing this, the NBA leader wants security agencies to be warned against “assaulting, attacking, abusing or otherwise harassing or otherwise using force against citizens who seek to have their voices heard through the peaceful protests.”

No Spill Of Blood

Meanwhile, ex-President has broken his silence on the protest against police brutality in the country, warning that no Nigerian’s blood should be spilled.

Taking to Twitter, Jonathan who described the protest as peaceful said the move would advance the cause of Nigeria.

“No Nigerian blood needs to be spilled or life lost during a peaceful protest that seeks to advance our country,” he said.

“We may hold different views on national issues, but there is no doubt that most people desire the same thing for Nigeria: a place where we can all live out the full potential of our God-given abilities. I implore everyone to exercise restraint as we walk through these challenging times.”

Jonathan’s remarks followed the series of protests by thousands of youths have been protesting against police brutality, harassment and killings by policemen across major cities since last week.

As part of measures to reform the Nigeria Police, the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, ordered all personnel of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) to report to the force headquarters in Abuja for debriefing, psychological and medical examination.

While the time-frame for the medical evaluation has not been disclosed, the IGP said that the officers are expected to undergo the process as a prelude to further training and reorientation before being redeployed into mainstream policing duties.

#SARSMUSTEND: Sanwo-Olu Joins Protest, Travels With Demands To See Buhari

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Tuesday showed his support for the EndSARS campaigners by carrying a placard and marching on the road with the protesters.

The governor on his twitter page said I joined the #ENDSARS protesters in Alausa and received a letter of their demands and once again I reiterated my support.

“I am now on my way to Abuja to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari and the goal of the conversation is clear.

“Tangible next steps to #EndPoliceBrutality”.

Governor Sanwo-Olu said that he has activated the process of getting justice for the victims of brutality and extra-judicial actions committed by some operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

He said the State Government will be setting up a panel of enquiry that will comprise youth leaders appointed by EndSARS protesters, members of the public, Government officials and security agencies to look into the allegations of human rights abuses levelled against SARS operatives in the State.

According to him,  the objective of the panel is to bring indicted police officers to book and get justice for victims killed and maimed by SARS operatives.

Besides the panel, the governor also announced a Trust Fund to compensate the families of the victims of police brutality in the State. The process of managing and disbursing the funds will be completely supervised by Civil Society Organisation (CSO) appointed by members of the public, the Governor said

“We are also immediately setting up a trust fund to compensate the families of police brutality in Lagos state even though no amount of money can reduce their pain.

“The trust fund will be supervised by a team appointed transparently by members of the public”.

Sanwo-Olu made the development known while addressing the youth protesting against SARS’ excessiveness at the State House in Alausa.

The protesters were led by Nollywood actors, music artists, and comedians, among whom included Debo Adebayo, popularly known as MC Macaroni, and Oluwatoyin Bayegun, known as Woli Arole.

This is the second time in two days Governor Sanwo-Olu would be meeting face-to-face with youths leading EndSARS campaign across the State. Yesterday, the Governor was at the Lekki Toll Plaza where protesters camped and blocked the expressway to air their agitations.

He reiterated that he identified with the protesters in their campaign against police brutality and pleading with the aggrieved youths not to undermine the legitimacy of their grievances by being violent and destructive.

The protesters at Alausa handed a communique to the Governor, which detailed their five-point demands and expectations from the leadership.

Sanwo-Olu said Lagos State Government will be addressing three of the protesters’ demands that are within the purview of the State and vowed to engage the President and the Inspector General of Police (IGP) on the remaining demands.

The Governor said he would continue to engage the Federal Government to initiate reforms that will bring about the police force that will protect and respect the rights of the citizens.

 “I understand a lot of youths have been battered and maimed by the people who are supposed to protect you. I understand you all are feeling the pain of brutality, which is why you have been taking to streets to express your disappointment. Your voice has been heard loudly and actions have been taken from the highest office in the land to address your grievances. It is time for us to move forward and engage further on your demand.

“There is a five-point demand which you have submitted to us today. You demanded the release of all protesters arrested on Monday. All of them have been released unconditionally. You demanded we set up a meeting that will lead to the process of getting justice and compensation for the victims of SARS brutality. I have instructed the Ministry of Youth and Social Development to set up a panel of inquiry ASAP that will get justice for the victims.

“We request that any citizen who has had a fatal encounter with SARS in Lagos to come forward and bring their cases to the panel. We will get justice for them. I have also set up a trust fund for the compensation of all victims of SARS brutality. For those who have died, we will be reaching out to their families. We request you (the protesters) to appoint your representatives into the panel and the Trust Fund for transparency.”

The Governor said the fourth and fifth points in the protesters’ demands, which border on police reform and improved remuneration for police officers across the country were not in the purview of the State. He, however, promised to personally deliver the message to President Buhari and the IGP.

He expressed concern over the violence that marred the EndSARS protest in Surulere on Monday, in which a civilian and a police officer died. He said the State Government had commenced an investigation into the matter but pleaded with the protesters not to take the laws into their own hands.

Sanwo-Olu assured the protesters that he would be leaving the protest ground for Abuja to meet with President Buhari and the IGP as he had promised.

“As I did promise you yesterday that I will be meeting with Mr. President today to physically present your demands to him. From this protest ground, I will be leaving for Abuja to meet with President Buhari and IGP. I will deliver your message and demands.”

PHOTOS! #SARSMUSTEND: Sanwo-Olu Joins Protest

 

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Tuesday showed his support for the EndSARS campaigners by carrying a placard and marching on the road with the protesters.

The governor on his twitter page said I joined the #ENDSARS protesters in Alausa and received a letter of their demands and once again I reiterated my support.

“I am now on my way to Abuja to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari and the goal of the conversation is clear.

“Tangible next steps to #EndPoliceBrutality”.

See Photos Below:

 

#SARSMUSTEND: Reps To Compensate Families Of Victims

A file photo of Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.
A file photo of Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.

 

 

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila has said that the lawmakers will ensure that it appropriates funds for the compensation of the victims of the #EndSARS protests.

Gbajabiamila said the action would be in line with the House resolve to ensure that the lives of those reportedly killed during the protests in parts of the country did not go in vain.

To get them compensated, the Speaker said, the House would obtain the list of all the victims and use the 2021 budget process to get them compensated through their families.

Commenting on the dissolution of SARS by President Muhammadu Buhari during Tuesday’s plenary, Gbajabiamila said the Nigerian people have spoken and that the government listened.

He said the House had reached some resolutions last week on the brutality of SARS officers and that it was gladdening that the unit has been disbanded.

“The people that we represent have spoken, and the government has listened. The President has unequivocally dissolved SARS.

“The House had last week reached some resolutions on the issue. It shows that we’re on the same page with the Nigerian people.

“We should get the list of those that lost their lives so that during this budget process, we’ll be able to appropriate for their full compensation,” the Speaker said.

Gbajabiamila also noted that the House must keep to one of the resolutions it reached last week, which said the Green Chamber would immediately commence the legislative process of reforming the Nigeria Police.

He indicated that a proposed legislation would soon be tabled on the floor of the House on that.

It is for the above purpose that the leadership of the House would meet with the national leadership of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) on Wednesday, the Speaker said.

At the end of his remark, Gbajabiamila requested his colleagues to observe a minute of silence in honour of those who lost their lives in the protests, which they all obliged.

#SARSMUSTEND: ‘Your Voice Has Been Heard Clearly’, Sanwo-Olu Tells Protesters

Babajide Sanwo-Olu

 

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu has told protesters that their voices have been heard.

This follows the ongoing protest calling for an end to police brutality and reform in the Nigeria Police Force (NPF)/

The Governor said this on Monday while addressing the protesters in Lekki where youths camped and blocked the expressway.

“Your voice has been heard clearly and a clear pronouncement has been made on the activities of SARS,” the governor added.

“The operation has been dissolved by the police leadership and just a moment ago, Mr. President addressed the nation on the issues you have raised. The President has said all SARS officers that are involved in the killing of innocent people and engaging in human rights abuses will be brought to justice.

He urged them to be peaceful while expressing their grievances against the excessive use of force by SARS, telling them their protest was legitimate.

The governor, however, pleaded with them not to block the roads while passing on their grievances to the authorities.

Sanwo-Olu said he identified with the EndSARS campaigners, noting that their agitations touched the essence of democratic freedom.

He said citizens must never be denied the rights to protest, but urged the protesters not to employ wrong methods to drive home their message.

“My stance on this EndSARS is unmistakable and I have told you that we identify with this protest because you have legitimate concerns,” Sanwo-Olu stated.

“I am saying it again here that this protest is in good faith. But, we must not be unruly when going out on a protest like this. We want you to be peaceful and decorous in expressing yourselves.”

Sanwo-Olu said he spoke with the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Muhammed Adamu, on Monday to outline the position of the Lagos State Government on police reforms, adding that he will visit President Buhari on Tuesday (tomorrow) and present the demands of Lagos youths on the issues.

The Governor praised the courage of the protesters and urged them not to block the key road.

The protesters were largely uncoordinated. They rebuffed pleas to open the road and demanded the physical presence of President Muhammadu Buhari.

Sanwo-Olu agreed with the demand of the protesters on reforms in the operations of law enforcement agencies, adding that the State Government would work with the police leadership on compensation for the family members of victims of SARS brutality in Lagos.

#SARSMUSTEND: Nigerians Demand Police Reform, Release Of Arrested Protesters, More

SARS protesters at Egbeda picture courtesy: @ManUtdInPidgin

 

Barely 24 hours after the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu dissolved the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Nigerians are not done with their demands for the scrapping of the unit.

Nigerians in their numbers across the country took to the streets on Monday morning blocking the roads, forcing commuters and motorists on their way to work to a standstill.

Some of the protesters have expressed their displeasure on social media calling for an end to SARS, reforms in the police, the release of some of the protesters that were arrested by the police during last week’s protests, prosecution of the officers that killed these victims, and compensation for the families of the deceased.

They are also calling for an end to police brutality, insisting that President Muhammadu Buhari should make the pronouncement disbanding SARS by way of an executive order.

Davido joins protest in Abuja

According to the protesters, this is not the first time the IGP would announce measures to rein in the SARS operatives, but such a decision had gone without any effect in the past.

Nigerians, especially the youths, had marched in the streets of major cities across the country for the most part of last week.

The protests also took place outside the shores of Nigeria, in the UK, where Nigerian youths gathered outside the country’s high commission in London to make the same demand.

See Tweets Below:

See Photos Below:

 

Plateau

A group with the name Plateau Youth movement has joined the ongoing protest along the streets of Jos metropolis.

The protesters displaying placards with different inscriptions are calling for the immediate release of all arrested protesters as well as demanding justice for all deceased victims or police brutality and appropriate compensation for their families.

Other demands include the setting up of an independent body to oversee the investigation of police misconduct and increase in Police salary so that they are adequately compensated for protecting the lives and properties of citizens.

#SARSMUSTEND: Protesters Block Lekki-Epe Toll Gate

Lagos residents protesting police brutality, extrajudicial killings, and harassment by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) have laid siege to the Lekki toll gate, along the Lekki-Epe Expressway.

The protesters gathered at the toll gate as early as 5:00 am to protest. Their activities grounded vehicular traffic along the expressway forcing commuters and motorists on their way to work to a standstill.

Several residents who have to access the toll gate to get to work said they had returned home because of the massive traffic.

READ ALSO: Police Must Act To Identify, Punish SARS Operatives Involved In Rights Abuse, Murder – Gbajabiamila

The protest demanding a total end to SARS operations comes after IGP announced the disbandment of the police unit after several days of protests last week.

The protesters are insisting that President Muhammadu Buhari himself should make the pronouncement disbanding the SARS operatives by way of an executive order. They are also demanding the release of all those arrested and justice for the victims of SARS brutality.

According to them, this is not the first time the IGP would announce measures to disband the SARS operatives but such a decision had gone without any effect in the past.

See below Tweets containing videos and photos from the protest at Lekki Toll Gate: