Olusegun Ariyo

Nigerians on Thursday yesterday had defiled the directives of the police authority against staging any rally or protests as they took to the major cities in the country to protest against corruption, Tariff hike, hunger and insecurity while the county marked its independent anniversary.

The police had in a statement said all officers and men of the state command to disallow any unlawful societies under whatever disguise from staging rallies or protest in Lagos within the state on Thursday 1st of October what happens to be the day Nigeria is celebrating its independent anniversary.

According to the statement signed by sp Olumuyiwa Adejobi, the Lagos state police public relation officer, quoted the Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of the south-west, to warned parents and guardian to warn their children and wards to desist from any rallies, protest or be mobilized to wage war against the government of the federal republic of Nigeria and that such youths would be arrested.

But the protesters defiled this directive as there was clampdown on many protesters who were either arrested or brutalized by security agents

The protesters, who also included #BringBackOurGirls activist, Aisha Yesufu, Ariyo Dare-Atoye, Henry Shield, Adebayo Raphael and Deji Adeyanju of Concerned Nigerians, among others, criticised what they described as oppression in the land.

Yesufu, in her remarks, said Nigerians must make the nation work, adding that things were becoming unbearable.

Raphael said Nigerians had passed a vote of no confidence in the Federal Government, adding that “under Buhari, our economy is in shambles; under him, hardship has been redefined.”

Dare-Atoye stated, “In the last 48 hours, a good number of soldiers have been slaughtered and injured. We are not better than those who have died, so why can’t we come out and protest? The only people enjoying Nigeria are the President and his family. A policeman cannot afford to cater for his family.

“Today, we have passed a vote of no confidence in the president and we want to tell them that this is just the beginning. The revolution of the common man is coming.”

Adeyanju said Nigerians were dissatisfied with the security and economic conditions in the country, stressing that “Nigeria is not working.”

He observed that soldiers, policemen and other security agents had taken over the Unity Fountain, Maitama, where the rally was supposed to hold.

The activist appealed to the US to place a visa ban on the Director-General of the Department of State Services for clamping down on protesters in Osogbo.

The campaigners also sang solidarity songs and berated the government for failing to address the insecurity in the country.

The campaigners, led by the convener of the movement, Omoyele Sowore, wielded a big banner with the inscription, ‘Buhari has failed,’ and placards, some of which read, ‘Failed leadership has made Nigeria the poverty capital of the world,’ and ‘#RevolutionNow.’

Part of its demand is President Buhari’s Resignation over what it described as increasing insecurity, hunger and corruption.

Meanwhile, in Lagos, Urban Express-News equally gathered that the protest started about 9:45 on Thursday with protesters gathered around ojota chanting solidarity song as they match to the Maryland area within Lagos metropolis.

One of the protesters Agba Jalingo request government to reverse the increase in fuel price he added; “We are tired of Buhari and we want to tell the whole world that we are tired. Even with all the police mobilizations, Nigerians are tired, he said!

After hours of unrelenting protest at Maryland, one of the leaders of the group, Kunle Ajayi, dispersed the crowd.

As the protesters were leaving the scene, a group of policemen in a van suddenly drove into the scene and attacked journalists who covered the protest, as one inspector Adadu, a mobile policeman was said to have hit Jaiyeola’s, Punch Photo journalist’s head with a Baton and fell with blood gushing out from his head.

Our correspondent gathered the cop fled the scene of the attack in a patrol vehicle and jaiyeola was also whisked away by the said policemen

Reacting to the development, the state commissioner of police, Hakeem Odumosu had described Adadu Conduct as unprofessional and immediately apologized and visited Jaiyeola at the police clinic in Ikeja where his head was stiched

In a statement, the state Police Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, said Odumosu had ordered immediate orderly room trial of the cop for brutalizing Jaiyeola, who had no confrontation with the police.

His Word: “The state Commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu, has ordered immediate detention and orderly room trial of one Inspector Innocent Adadu attached to PMF 22 Ikeja, for hitting and injuring one Kayode Jaiyeola, of PUNCH Newspapers with a stick at Maryland, Lagos, on Thursday, October 1, 2020, around 11.10 am.

“The police chief, who was monitoring the deployment and operational activities of officers and men of the command for the enforcement of the order against unlawful gathering and protest by some unpatriotic individuals, raced to the scene and personally moved the injured journalist to the Police Cottage Hospital at Area F, GRA, Ikeja, where he personally waited and ensured that the injured journalist was given immediate and best medical treatment. He cut-off his movements to stay throughout the journalist’s treatment and subsequent discharge.

“Preliminary findings carried out by the CP and eyewitness’ accounts from senior officers on the ground revealed that the cop suddenly attacked the journalist, without any previous altercation or confrontation. This propelled the CP to order for his trial in order to serve as a deterrent to others who are fond of engaging in unprofessional and unethical conducts.”

The PPRO also noted that 30 protesters were arrested at various locations in the state for unlawful assembly and breach of the public peace, adding that “the arrested individuals, who put on crested vests of #RevolutionNow, with placards, will be charged to court on Friday, October 2, 2020.

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