Men of the Nigerian military on Tuesday dispersed #EndSARS protesters from major roads in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti state capital.
Tribune Online observed that the demonstration by the youths paralysed commercial and economic activities in Ado-Ekiti and other towns in the state as schools, offices and major stores were shut.
The deployment of soldiers and other security agents might be connected to Monday night’s incident where commercial trucks conveying food items were burnt to ashes by hoodlums who hijacked the protest.
The Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Sunday Abutu who confirmed that two trucks were affected, however, said no life was lost in the incident.
The joint security patrol, including solders, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and policemen on Tuesday dispersed the protesters peacefully on Tuesday in Fajuyi, Adebayo and Basiri areas of the state capital and as of the time of filing this report, none of the protesting youths are on the streets.
Speaking on the deployment of the security agents especially military men, the state Commissioner for Information, Mr Akin Omole said they were deployed to ensure law and order, saying they were out to protest citizens including the protesters.
Omole in a statement in Ado-Ekiti on Tuesday said that the government was being proactive to prevent the #endsars protest from being hijacked to unleash mayhem on innocent citizens.
According to him, ” The soldiers were in the state to protect the people, including the protesters as well as to prevent hoodlums and miscreants from hijacking the peaceful protest by hiding behind the demonstration to commit a crime and harass innocent citizens.
He stated that government is not unaware that the concerns of the public went beyond a need for Police/SARS reforms to a basic demand for better governance emphasizing that the state government had already commenced consultation with the people to address the fundamental issues that led to the protests with the establishment of the
” While the present administration in Ekiti recognizes and respects the right of peaceful assembly, and in fact, identifies with the people on the demand for good governance, all stakeholders must be mindful of the safety of all lives and both public and private property in the State.
“Innocent law-abiding citizens should be allowed to go about their lawful businesses without hindrance while there must be due cognizance of the fact that willful destruction of properties will be detrimental to the socio-economic wellbeing of the people,” Omole said.