#EndSARS protests spread to more states
Day after day, the campaign against police brutality in Nigeria continues to gain strong momentum.
Undaunted by restriction from government security agents, Nigerians youths continue to agitate for an end to brutality, extortion, harassment, and extrajudicial killing by police.
The agitations started first in Lagos and Abuja last Wednesday. It has now gained national momentum as almost every state in Nigeria now has a convergence point where the youths are chanting ‘End SARS, End police brutality, stop killing us’.
In Lagos State, the entrance to the governor’s office beside Lagos State House of Assembly was the meeting point for protesters who had sleepless nights during the weekend, calling for an end to police brutality.
The police headquarters in Abuja was the place of protest for the agitators in Abuja.
Their demands looked to be met on Sunday after the inspector general of police Mohammed Adamu announced the dissolution of the controversial Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) of the police. Their mission was, however, far from the finish.
More protesters trooped out in thousands across major cities in Nigeria as of Tuesday, demanding a five-point agenda that majored on reforming the police from President Muhammadu Buhari.
As early as 4:00 am, #EndSARS protesters arrived at the Lekki toll gate in Lagos State. The protesters in their numbers brought a halt to the commercial activity of the toll gate.
They continued to chant ‘End SARS’ with many carrying placards with ‘stop the killing, end SARS, stop police brutality.
Motorists were diverted to an alternative road to gain access to Lekki after hours in traffic gridlock.
Hundreds of Lagosians protesting against SARS also laid siege at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport toll gate on Monday.
The protesters grounded vehicular traffic along the expressway to a halt.
The story was the same in other parts of the country – Ibadan, Akure, Delta State, Enugu, Kaduna, Kano State, and others.
Although the governor of Rivers State Nyesom Wike barred the demonstration on Monday, Port Harcourt became the point of attention on Tuesday when protesters defied the governor’s order.
Despite the protest being against police brutality, harassment, assault, and shooting of protesters persist in many of the centres.
On Saturday, police personnel shot Jimoh Ishaq dead during the protest at Ogbomoso area of Oyo State. Another person was shot dead at the Surulere area of Lagos State on Monday.
Buhari in a video on Monday said he identifies with the concerns of the protesters while commiserating with families of victims of police shooting during the protest.
He, however, assured Nigerians that “disbanding of SARS is only the first step in our commitment to extensive police reforms in order to ensure that the primary duty of the police and other law enforcement agencies remains the protection of lives and livelihood of our people.
“We will also ensure that all those responsible for misconduct and wrongful acts are brought to justice.”
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