Some #EndSARS protest activists sustained injuries when policemen fired live bullets and teargas to disperse them at AYA junction in Abuja on Monday.
The protesters had been marching to different parts of the city before the police intercepted them along Mararaba-Nyanya road at AYA roundabouts.
A lady carrying a national flag was assaulted when the police forcefully seized it from her. At least three to four officers charged at her and hit her with their batons and forced her off the streets.
Many residents of the federal capital territory had been on the streets for several days now and had been calling for a reformation of the police and demand improved welfare on the standard of living among citizens.
The demonstrations were initially targeted at the special anti-robbery squad (SARS) but they have continued despite the dissolution of the unit by Mohammed Adamu, inspector-general of police (IGP). This made it obvious that their demands was much more than just end SARS protest.
The protesters have vowed that they will not leave the streets until their demands are implemented. One of their demands is the prosecution of police officers involved in extrajudicial killings.
On Sunday night, protesters converged on the head office of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in Abuja. Subsequently, soldiers and policemen were deployed in various parts of the nation’s capital.
The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) and Senate President Ahmad Lawan have called on protesters to discontinue their demonstrations, assuring them that their demands would be met.
Meanwhile in Edo state three #EndSARS protesters were raped as reported by the deputy governor.
Following the imposed curfew by the state governor His Excellency Governor Godwin Obaseki on Monday, many protesters still came out as early as 6:30-7:00am on Tuesday morning to continue their barricades and harrasment of innocent citizens going about their business.
This led to the deployment of security personnels who shot at protesters to scare them off the streets.
Notable among these shooting incidences was the popular sapele road where one of the major states prisons facility was located and also broken into yesterday, and an estimated 2,000 number of inmates escaped.
There were gun shots all over the states and some innocent citizens caught stray bullet in the process. An elderly lady at the popular Santana market where most of the confrontations took place was accidentally hit with a bullet while she was trying to seek shelter in her caravan shop. Another young boy had his arm almost completely cut of with bullets as well.
In all of these the protesters refused to give up the fight. They kept running into adjacent streets when the police and security personnels approached and shot at them to disperse them. Some protesters even had the courage to throw stones and other harmful objects back at the police shooters.
Whenever the police left each scenery the protesters regrouped and continued their barricades and bonfires.
It’s been speculated and reported that some of the protesters where hired thugs and that’s why the whole protest exercise became violent in nature.
Sources claimed that when some of the security personnels shooting at the protesters were asked why they were shooting at the protesters they replied that they were flouting government law of a twenty four (24) hours curfew in the state and also that they, (the protesters) were carrying out unlawful protest and constituting nuisance by looting, extorting money, harassing, and threatening the lives of innocent citizens.
Citizens of the states however are now having mixed feelings of the whole situation. Many are of the opinion that it is not right for protesters to be shot at no matter what the case may be.
Other school of thoughts claim it’s a wise decision by the state governor to restore parity to the state by bringing in the security force, since the whole process has taken a
whole new approach and violent outlook.
Gift Joseph Okpakorese