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Police vow to prevent another #EndSARS protest in Lagos

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Proposed protest is calculated to cause massive destruction of lives

Lagos State police boss, Hakeem Odumosu, has vowed to ensure that the proposed protest by civil society groups and #ENDSARS promoters is averted.

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Odumosu, who addressed newsmen in Lagos, noted that the proposed protest is a calculated attempt to cause pandemonium and massive destruction of life and property.

He, therefore, appealed to the public, particularly parents and guardians, to discourage their children and wards from the protest, which he said runs contrary to the existing peace and security situation in the state.

“I deem it imperative to jointly address you and the general public with the Honourable Commissioner for Justice, Lagos State, on the stance of the police command on the proposed #EndSARS protest slated for Saturday, 13th February 2021, being championed by some individuals, #OCCUPYLAGOSLEKKITOLLGATE, at Lekki Toll Gate plaza, Lagos State.

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“Permit me to state in clear terms that organising any protest in furtherance of the recent violent and destructive #EndSARS protest will be counterproductive to the ongoing series of inquiries and investigations into many cases related to the #EndSARS violence and the present security situation of the state.

“Above all, the command has gathered intelligence that some hidden agents of destruction and shadow parties that planned and orchestrated the last #EndSARS violence have concluded plans to cause another set of mayhem in Lagos State and spread same to other parts of the country, tactically and spontaneously, like the recent violence.

“Premised on the available intelligence and due threat analysis carried out on the planned protest, the command perceives such proposed protest as a calculated attempt to cause pandemonium, brouhaha and massive destruction of life and property under whatever guise and such will not be allowed in Lagos State.

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“The Lagos State, its people and the Nigerian nation at large are still groaning (in pains) the aftermath of the last Endsars violence that left many lives and properties lost. It is therefore not reasonable to allow the same to repeat itself in the state.

“More expedient why such gathering should not hold is the prevailing Covid-19 virus, which is rampaging in the country. You will all recall four days ago, the Federal Government Task Force on Covid-19 declared that the country now has 13 variants of Covid-19 virus, which makes it more deadly.

“With this development, all hands must be on deck to halt the spread of the virus by self-complying with its protocols, which is the maintenance of social distance.”

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He noted that the judgement pronounced by the judicial panel of inquiry on the reopening of the Lekki Toll Gate plaza had been misconceptualised by the #EndSARS agitators.

“The Panel of Inquiry on #EndSARS violence in the state has taken drastic steps to forward reports to the state government on the payment of compensations to affected individuals that were adjudged victims of police brutality and excessiveness. The government has released some amount of money to take care of these compensations accordingly.

“On this note, the command, therefore, warns that in as much as the police respect people’s opinions and human rights, no protest would be allowed in any part of the state as the security of life and property of the government and the good people of Lagos State is paramount and not negotiable.

“The command also warns that adequate arrangement and deployment of security forces to kick against and dislodge any violent protest, gathering and procession in any part of the state has been emplaced. The decision of the command in this regard is in the interest of all and sundry in Lagos and to ensure that the statutory responsibilities of the Nigeria Police Force are not compromised.

“I, therefore, appeal to the general public, particularly parents and guardians, to discourage and warn their children and wards to ignore any unreasonable call or mobilisation for protest or gathering which runs against the existing peace and security situation of the state. I wish to also warn that the command will not hesitate to resist any protest and/or gathering with all available resources at its disposal but within the ambit of the law.”

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