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Lekki Shootings: Oduduwa descendants absolve Army of blame, declares total support for troops

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The Coalition of Oduduwa Descendants (COD) has absolved the Nigerian Army of any wrongdoing at Lekki toll gate or any part of the country during the EndSARS protests.

COD in a statement signed by its General-Secretary, Kolawole Emmanuel, on Monday, the Oduduwa group said the troops acted in the best interest of the nation.

According to the COD, the intervention of the Nigerian Army was timely to quell the imminent collapse and save the country from disintegrating into anarchy.

While declaring total support for the troops who they said remain committed to the preservation of democracy in Nigeria, the Coalition of Oduduwa Descendants called on all well-meaning citizens to do likewise.

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“We are all witness to the wanton looting of public and private properties by hoodlums and other criminal elements. We also witnessed the mayhem that resulted in the burning of houses, ransacking of the Oba of Lagos Palace and a host of other atrocities committed by the hoodlums and secessionist groups who took advantage of the EndSARS protest to wreak havoc in the country.

“It is also a statement of the fact that Lagos State recorded the highest casualties, hence the need for the intervention of the Nigerian Army to quell the uprising and save the country from disintegrating into anarchy.

“The Coalition of Oduduwa Descendants having reviewed the whole events in the past weeks states in unequivocal terms that indeed the Nigerian Army acted in the best interest of the country at Lekki and other parts of the country, regardless of the narrative been pushed forward by some individuals and groups,” it stated .

The group further urged “Nigerians, as well as the international community not to be hasty in passing judgment against the intervention of the Nigerian Army in arresting the violence that erupted in almost 20 states in Nigeria”, adding that “If not for anything, Nigerians must in retrospection see the arson, looting and killings by the hoodlums and other criminal elements that hijacked the EndSARS protests across the country.”

COD also appealed to “Nigerians to realize that the intervention of the Nigerian Army was indeed timely and was in the best interest of the country hence the peace and tranquillity that now pervades the length and breadth of the country.

“Nigerians must come to terms with the invaluable contributions of the Nigerian Army in Internal Security Operations in the country, which by and large is an added responsibility in the event where the city police are overwhelmed as it was in the case with the violence that erupted in the aftermath of the EndSARS protest.”

The Coalition of Oduduwa Descendants, however, warned that criticizing the Nigerian Army is not the best approach that should be employed due to the exigencies of time.

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“The Coalition of Oduduwa Descendants as a consequent state that criticizing the Nigerian Army is not the best approach that should be employed due to the exigencies of time, but rather Nigerians in their generality should applaud the efforts of the Nigerian Army so far.

“Nigerians must also devise means to make tangible contributions to an improvement in the involvement of the Nigerian Army in internal security operations which would ultimately be beneficial in our quest for long-lasting peace in all parts of Nigeria.

“The Coalition of Oduduwa Descendants is using this medium to call on all Nigerians regardless of our ethnic or religious affiliations to extend their support to the Nigerian Army in its efforts towards addressing the various security threats in the country.

“The support of the Coalition of Oduduwa Descendants for the Nigerian Army remains unflinching, and we wish to encourage officers and soldiers of the Nigerian Army to stay steadfast in their support for the preservation of democracy in Nigeria,” the group stated.

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