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Protests echo restructuring calls, says IYC, deplores attack on leader

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Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) has described the #EndSARS protests across Nigeria as a reverberation of the calls to restructure the country, and not just an end to police brutality.

The group’s spokesman, Ebilade Ekerefe, commended the never-say-die spirit of the youth, who were bent in making the country a better place to live.

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Igbifa, who visited Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri, at the Government House, Yenagoa, yesterday, met the protesters who called him names and pelted him with stones and sachet water. They attacked him for his alleged reluctance to call out Ijaw youth for the protest.

Notwithstanding, he appealed to them to stay focused, no matter the provocation by retrogressive forces.

However, IYC condemned the attack on its president by the angry protesters.

“While these steps are going on, some unguarded protesters among genuine ones attacked the president of IYC, the symbol of the Ijaw struggle, whose office should be revered by all.

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“For us in the IYC, the #EndSARS protest is a metaphor for a restructured and reorganised Nigeria, and there is no better time than now,” the group stated.

According to IYC, this is the time to bring back the 2014 National Confab Report for full implementation in the interest of peace, unity, and political stability in the country.

It added: “This is not the time to joke with things that matter. President Muhammadu Buhari has an opportunity to make history now. This nationwide protest is coming at a time the people of Niger Delta are provoked by the sale of N5 billion gold bars to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) by the Zamfara State Government, while the people of the Niger Delta have no access or control over their oil and gas resources.”

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The youth lamented the destruction of the Niger Delta ecosystem on which their livelihoods depend.

“However, it gladdens our heart that the so-called lazy youth have risen to challenge the status quo, which has made us live like animals in our country.

“In the days ahead, IYC, in consultation with critical leaders from the region, will decide the best course of action as we march towards a well-organised and well-structured country.”

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