There are some tense moments in the last few days on the issues bordering on massive protests by youths across the Nation which erupted by widespread gross violations of human rights, ranging from brutality, intimidation, harassment, torture, extortion and above all extra-judicial killing of Nigerians perpetrated by members of the disbanded Special Anti – Robbery Squad(SARS).
Broadly, Mass protest is the most effective means of communication expressing disagreement and desired change. Nigerians out-cry with waving placards are their constitutional rights because power belongs to the people of Nigerians not to the SARS. I refer you to
S. 14(2)(a)1999 Constitution Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) which is to the effects that
” Sovereignty belongs to the people of Nigeria from whom Government through this constitution derives all its power and authority “.
By and large, the rightful means of lodging complaint in a democratic setting is by mass protest, even, a newly born baby cries and weeps in protest of what he wants, this action will consequently subject his mother to an insight and direction on whether such baby needs medical care or stomach care.
Mass protests throughout history have come at a time when enough of the population has been affected by policies of the rulers and elites resulting into economic hardship, infrastructural deficit and unemployment rate, they are often been met with brutal and crackdown.
In conclusion, i therefore commend states Government for prompt actions by imposing curfew in their various states as a measure to avert break down of Law and order which may ensue by the actions of hoodlums in the name of mass protest.
I also urge President MBuhari led administration not to embark on excessive force to dislodge protesters rather but to pacify the angry crowd because protest is their civic rights, though, peaceful mass protest is lawful, however, it may turn out to be criminal and malicious in nature when it resulted into bloodshed and violence.
Moreso, it is high time for protesters to retreat and stay at home and not to allow unscrupulous miscreants that have hijacked the peaceful protest to further unleash mayhem on well being of Nigerians and their properties for their personal gain.
More importantly, retreating is imminent at this time in order to curtail vandalism and the spike rate of Corona virus which has been reduced to nothing. President Muhamadu Buhari has listened to agitations and has taken drastical step.
Suspending protest will therefore allow relevant authorities to brainstorm on the next line of action.
May Allah (swt) restore peace and tranquility to our dear nation and our respective homes. God bless Nigeria and Nigerians.
Most grateful for your patience and kind attention.
Al Imam, Barr, Abdullahi Salaty.
Public affairs analyst and the Chief Imam Onimago Central Mosque, Mandate Housing Estate. Ilorin.