Nigeria police warn over new Lagos #EndSARS protests
Victor Ngaleka (centre), an official within the Nationwide Meeting, accepting the memo handed over by Nigerian nationals exterior Parliament as a part of their #EndSARS marketing campaign. (Photograph: Ashraf Hendricks)
- The #EndSARS motion started in October 2020 initially over abuses by the infamous SARS anti-robbery squad.
- The rallies ended quickly after at the very least 10 folks had been shot and killed at Lekki tollgate in Lagos.
- Judicial panels had been arrange throughout Nigeria to research police abuses, together with what occurred on 20 October in Lagos.
Nigerian police in Lagos on Monday warned in opposition to any protests deliberate to mark the anniversary of the mass #EndSARS rallies that rocked Africa’s most populous nation a yr in the past.
The #EndSARS motion started in October 2020 initially over abuses by the infamous SARS anti-robbery squad however grew into the biggest anti-government protests in Nigeria’s fashionable historical past.
Lagos Police Commissioner Hakeem Odumosu gave the warning about protests on Monday after receiving intelligence about “clandestine plans by some youths, people or teams to embark on a protest at this time”.
He stated in an announcement:
To forestall breakdown of regulation and order, the police will use all respectable means inside their constitutional powers to suppress the deliberate protest.
Throughout final yr’s rallies in Lagos, hundreds took to the streets bringing the nation’s financial capital of greater than 20 million folks to a standstill.
The rallies ended quickly after at the very least 10 folks had been shot and killed at Lekki tollgate in Lagos, prompting worldwide outcry and an investigation into the deaths.
Amnesty Worldwide stated the military opened fireplace on protestors, however safety forces rejected accountability saying troops used clean rounds to disperse folks breaking a curfew.
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Actual bullets had been solely shot within the air, the military stated.
The federal government disbanded the SARS police unit in a concession to protesters.
However key figures of the marketing campaign say they’ve since been pressured by the authorities and subjected to intimidation and harassment, in keeping with Amnesty.
Judicial panels had been arrange throughout Nigeria to research police abuses, together with what occurred on 20 October in Lagos.
However proceedings on the panel in Lagos have typically stalled, with representatives of the military failing to point out up.
Because the preliminary mass rallies in October 2020, a number of a lot smaller protests have been held in Lagos and Abuja.
Omoyele Sowore, an activist who took half within the motion, stated on social media that memorial protests could be held on 20 October.
“No one can suppress the need of Nigerians,” he stated.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari’s authorities banned Twitter earlier this yr, saying the platform is used to unfold messages from teams seeking to destabilise the nation.
Some Nigerians have turned to utilizing VPNs to get across the ban whereas officers say the social media platform can be restored quickly after negotiations with Twitter.
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