Youths march through Lagos streets in support of ‘Operation Crocodile Smile’
SEVERAL youths on Thursday staged a peaceful rally tagged “Peace, Unity and Security,” as they marched from 7up to the popular Gani Fawehinmi Freedom Park, Ojota in Lagos, in support of current military operation tagged “Operation Crocodile Smile” in the South-West zone of the country.
The youth, who came under the aegis of Progressive Yoruba Youth Congress (PYYC), staged the rally expressing support for President Muhammadu Buhari for approving the military operation which they said would rid the region of criminal elements and also go a long wa in securing lives and properties of the residents.
Some of the placards read: “Southwestern Nigeria fully supports Mr. President’s Security Measures,” “Yoruba Youth Welcome Operation Crocodile Smile,” “Unity, Peace and Security, our concern,” President Muhammed Buhari, thanks for protecting us against enemies of state,” among others.
National President of the group, Desmond Abiona, told newsmen, that evidence had shown that the exercise had resulted in lesser crimes in other regions where a similar operation was carried out.
Abiona said the operation would reduce all manners of criminality in the South West zone of the country especially the one being perpetrated by the Badoo Cult in the Ikorodu area of Lagos State.
He, therefore, declared the group’s support for the Nigerian Army and other security agencies to help President Buhari secure the country.
“We, therefore, declare our readiness to cooperate with the Nigerian Army and its sister security agencies to help President Muhammadu Buhari protect us all.
“As we welcome the Operation Crocodile contingent to the South West, we use this opportunity to declare our support for the exercise while assuring that the ill feelings and hostility exhibited against it in the South East would not be the case in our homeland.
“This is because we recognise that anyone that puts on the uniform of the Nigerian Army is already making great sacrifices for the country and must be encouraged to keep giving their best.
“Hence, like Oliver Twist, we are constrained to ask for more. Similar exercises conducted by the Nigerian Army in other jurisdictions have reportedly resulted in lesser crime rate because soldiers used their capacity building exercise to flush out criminals in this area.
“Our belief is that we would not be asking for too much by presenting the leadership of the Nigerian Army with a shopping list of issues we think soldiers can use Operation Crocodile Smile to deal with for our people,” Abiona said.