Gani Adams condemns police over killings, urges peaceful #EndSARS protests
• Restates call for restructuring
The Aareonakakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams, has condemned the actions of the Nigeria Police over the killings of some protesters across the country, describing the incidence as most disturbing seeing the number of casualties growing by the day.
This was just as he maintained that Nigerian youths hold it as a right under the country’s constitution to express their views against police brutality and the state of the nation.
Iba Adams made this condemnation, on Tuesday, in a signed statement made available to newsmen in Lagos by his Special Assistant on Media, Kehinde Aderemi, against the backdrop of recent protests by youths demanding an immediate end to illegal activities of Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (F-SARS).
Aare Ona Kakanfo, however, commended the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr Mohammed Adamu’s prompt intervention in immediately disbanding SARS, an arm of the country’s police.
Adams, while expressing concerns over the killings of some of the protesters in Ogbomoso in Oyo State as well as Lagos and Abuja, condemned the attacks on the Palace of the Soun of Ogbomoso, Oba Oyewumi, by some irate youths, urging the youth to respect traditional institutions.
“It is most disturbing seeing the number of casualties in the recent protests growing by the day. It is also very unfortunate that some of the bad eggs in the police have become utterly lawless, killing and maiming Nigerians- young and old- for raising their voices against the brutality being perpetrated by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) across the country,”
Adams further urged the protesters to remain calm and unperturbed in their bid to drive home their demand, maintaining that it was their rights to protest peacefully, as obtained in the civilised world.
“Those youths protesting are of the digital age, they are the leaders of the future and they are entitled to express their voices and concerns over police brutality and the state of the nation,” he said.
Gani Adams, while expressing sadness over the present situation of things, said there were signals that the ongoing protests might trigger a national crisis that may consume the nation, even as lamented that the present administration “lacks the courage to implement policies that can solve the myriad of problems confronting this nation.”
“As far as I am concerned, the present situation in the country is a bad signal that Nigeria is heading for a long, protracted crisis. The political, social and economic milieu is suffering from a serious transition,” he said.
“Six years ago, a bag of rice was sold for seven thousand naira, (N7000) now it is close to forty thousand naira, (40,000). Six years ago, the Premium Motor Spirits (PMS) was less than one hundred naira per litre, but now fuel is sold for over one hundred and sixty naira. Many of our politicians thrive on rigging, even as the political process has been monetised.
“In the history of our nation, it has never got to this level where the entire system is now in comatose. Nigerians have rights to a peaceful protest and it behoves on the Federal Government to listen to the cries of Nigerians over the spate of insecurity, hike in electricity tariffs, increase in the prices of food commodities, resulting in the high cost of living.
“For instance, many of these youths protesting are students that have left the universities for over 10 years and are still unemployed.
“With their hopes looking bleak, the youth are frustrated in the present government that has lost the confidence of the people. That is why the protests keep growing daily,” he added.
Gani Adams, however, restated that giving the current situation, it was better the country was restructured to regionalism, based on federating units or every part exit through referendum peacefully without shedding of blood, warning that “Liberia, Rwanda, Congo and Somalia started like this before they were engulfed in war.”
According to him, there are signals that the Federal Government provided room for the current protests rocking the country currently, saying the nation can only be rescued from imminent collapse if the government listens to the people.
“More importantly, I think we must restructure this country to regionalism, based on federating units or we exit through referendum peacefully without shedding of blood. Liberia, Rwanda, Congo and Somalia started like this before they were engulfed in war.
“There are signals that with all these problems starring us in the face, the FG has provided the rooms for all these protests and we can only save the nation from imminent collapse if the Federal Government listens to the people,” he said.