Bukhari rejects Buratai’s request to deploy soldiers for EndSARS
President Muhammadu Bukhari has rejected a request by the Nigerian military to quell the ongoing #EndSARS protests involving soldiers, according to the Peoples Gazette, on the grounds that such an approach could backfire.
Bukhari said that heavily armed soldiers with a directive to open fire should be a last resort – if ever considered – due to the spontaneous and elaborate nature of the ongoing rebuff to decades of police brutality, according to the president and two military officials. Sources said this on Wednesday evening.
Our sources said that Mr. Buratai and some of his generals are increasingly angry over the refusal of the #EndSARS protesters to resign.
He asked the president for permission to send soldiers to disperse protesters and take control of demonstration sites in Lagos and Abuja, a senior administration official told The Gazette shortly after 11:00 pm.
The official said Mr. Bukhari fears an escalation of protests if an attempt is made to use soldiers to violently suppress them.
“The president is afraid of escalating the situation,” said our source. “He doesn’t want this to backfire because there are many places where protests are taking place all over the country.”
Chief of Staff Ibrahim Gambari was among those who advised the president not to send troops.
National Security Advisor Babagana Monguno was not present at the meeting, but the source said he would be informed. The Gazette has yet to determine whether the NSA was notified or not, and its phone number was not immediately connected Wednesday night.
Mr Buratai’s proposal followed a week-long demonstration that refused to cut despite the government sticking to some of the protesters’ key demands.
On Sunday, Police Chief Mohammed Adamu announced the immediate scrapping of the Anti-Robbery Task Force, a police investigative unit whose decades of corruption and brutality have spawned the world-famous hashtag.
He also announced a new unit to replace the deceased brutal team.
Mr Bukhari has also repeatedly assured that his administration will take police reform more seriously, but urged protesters to start dialogue around a sustainable solution.
Protesters have refused to end the campaign on at least five key issues bordering citizens’ rights and the return of thousands of SARS victims.
But top officials of the presidential government and security services are boiling over and “now cannot wait” for immediate action.
Their despair followed several pieces of advice they gave the president last week; including some without any law enforcement interference.
A military source said the president and his key insiders are reluctant to take a direct position because they are still learning to understand the main protesters.
“The president can still ask for time to get a better understanding of the protesters first,” the military hat said to the Gazette. “But the president recognizes that these categories of protesters are not the same as members of the Shiite sect.”
Source: – Peoples Official Journal