Police Must Protect #EndSARS Protesters- Falana Tells FG Amid Attack by Hoodlums

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Police Must Protect #EndSARS Protesters- Falana Tells FG Amid Attack by Hoodlums
Nwolu Obiajulu
  • Says Govt should dialogue with patriots

 

Femi Falana, SAN has called on the Federal Government and the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu to deploy the Nigeria Police and ensure safety of #EndSARS protesters who have come under attack by hoodlums on Wednesday.

Speaking on Wednesday during a television programme, the human rights lawyer urged the government to dialogue with the protesters and provide lasting solutions to their demands.

He added that if the government could negotiate with terrorists and kidnappers, how much more patriotic citizens who have served to shine light on urgent need for police reform.

Mammoth crowd of youths have thronged to the streets across the country over the past few days, demanding for an end to police brutality and extrajudicial killings carried out by the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad unit of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

The Inspector IGP had announced a disbandment of the unit and went ahead to set up the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) unit to fill the void left by scrapping of SARS.

However, the protests have continued unabated in several cities with many asking for concrete actions to address their demands.

Reacting to the development, Falana said, “I will like to call on the government to stop allowing armed thugs or hoodlums to attack protesters who have conducted themselves peacefully, maturedly and patriotically.

“If everybody had recognised that these young men and women played positive roles in drawing the attention of government and the authorities to the crisis in the Nigeria Police Force, they should not be attacked. In fact, the law says protesters shall be protected by the police.

“The Police must protect protesters.

“I have been speaking with some of them and they have been saying if they leave the streets, nothing will happen. So, let the government roll out the resolves and actualise its promises.

“The President has a duty today to reconstitute the Nigerian National Human Rights Commission.

“The Accountant-General of the Federation has a duty tomorrow to open an account that will warehouse the money that has been earmarked under the Police Trust Fund to fund the police.

“My advice to the President is to get all the agencies of government to carry out their statutory duties.

“The government must engage in dialogue with the leaders of the protesting group. After all, the government is negotiating with terrorists and kidnappers. So, why don’t you negotiate with patriots like the young men and women that are protesting all over the country?

According to Falana, if the government can address these demands, the protesting youths will be convinced to leave the streets.

He added, “There has to be a full-fledged Inquiry that will support a Judicial Commission of Inquiry to sit in the open like the Oputa Panel and investigate the atrocities of all the extrajudicial killings by SARS agents.

“If the government can put all these in place and these can be done in three days, the young men and women can now be persuaded to leave the streets.”

This post was written by Nwolu Obiajulu.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.

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