“You have expressed your point of view, let the government fulfill your demands” – Tinubu to #EndSARS protesters
“You have expressed your point of view, let the government fulfill your demands” – Tinubu #EndSARS protesters
Former Lagos Governor and Head of the All Progressive Congress (APC) Bola Ahmed Tinubu pleaded with young Nigerians to end the #EndSARS protest and give the government a chance to implement the reforms requested by the protesters.
Tinubu said in a statement on Twitter that the Bukhari administration not only destroyed the SARS unit, but also accepted a five-point request that sparked protests.
Read his statement;
“Building a nation in which peace and justice reign.” Justice, as one of our greatest writers remembered unforgettably, is “the first condition of humanity.” Demands for fundamental police reform by protesting youth translate our aspiration into our national anthem.
A society in which those who are paid from public finances to protect people’s lives and property are themselves a threat to people’s freedom, security and dignity; where human life is difficult to distinguish from the natural state of Thomas Hobbes, lonely, poor, mean and cruel, not suitable for living free and respectable people. Such impunity and illegality are incompatible with the values and principles of a democratic society based on the rule of law.
Society is faced with such problems as injustice, impunity, corruption, dictatorship, and is forced to respond with resistance and struggle for emancipation.
The result is the triumph of justice over injustice, freedom over tyranny and good over evil, which allows society to rise to a higher level of good, responsible, accountable and responsive government.
It was through this process that colonialism, apartheid and all forms of dictatorship, lawlessness and tyranny were overcome in time and space. Our current democratic order emerged as a result of the struggle in response to the challenge of the military dictatorship.
Thus, the impunity of SARS became a challenge to which young people responded positively and courageously, which marked the beginning of a fundamental reform of the country’s police system.
Protesters must acknowledge that President Bukhari’s administration acted with commendable desperation, not only eliminating SARS, but also granting the five-point request that sparked protests. This demonstrates a commendable sensitivity to the complaints of young people.
It is right that the government should be given the opportunity to implement the reforms demanded by the demonstrators. It certainly cannot be done instantly with the wave of a magic wand.
If the government did not implement the reforms promised in the past, then the speed with which it responded to the demands of the protesters, this time demonstrates that there have been positive changes on the part of the government, both in attitude and in the new need.
The protesters have made significant progress in a very short period. But they should also be careful not to waste those profits due to a lack of restraint and strategic thinking. For example, it is very unfortunate that hooligans, hooligans, and various criminals have taken on protests to commit violence, disrupt civilian life, and harass, intimidate and attack innocent people running their legitimate businesses.
The organizers of the protest intend to achieve the goals set for police reform, which the government agreed in principle. This, of course, cannot be their motive for causing general anarchy or for bringing about a regime change.
If they give the impression that this is their goal, any government will need to act with the determination and strength necessary to restore law and order and preserve constitutional governance.
The vigor and activeness of the protests attests to the growing strength of a democratic culture in Nigeria. This is a demonstration of the beauty of democracy, its promotion and protection of the people’s power.
However, protesters must be careful not to pave the way for the erosion or destruction of the very democratic process, which gives them the freedom and right to protest in the first place.
Their democratic right to protest should not be exercised in a way that interferes with the democratic right of other citizens to freedom of movement, expression and freedom to pursue their own lives.
The fight for police reform certainly contributes to the welfare and protection of millions of Nigerians. A contradiction between the actions of the protesters, which will lead to a further deterioration in the economic well-being of the very people for whom they are fighting.
The protests have convincingly demonstrated the reality and power of popular power, and the new energy must be harnessed and channeled into strengthening, not weakening, democracy in the country. Of course, after that the country cannot remain the same.
It is a good sign that Governor Babajide Sanwo Olu in Lagos and several other state governments have quickly established judicial commissions to investigate police brutality over the years. I call on state governments that have not yet done so to follow suit.
Let me thank all of our religious leaders, Christians and Muslims for their patriotism and high sense of responsibility during this difficult time. I appeal to them with an appeal to urge their many followers to declare protests for now and give the world a chance.
Finally, I also make a strong message to the protesters: YOU DID YOUR TASK. THE GOVERNMENT HAS MADE A COMMITMENT TO YOU. PLEASE, PLEASE CANCEL PROTESTS. GIVE YOUR GOVERNMENT THE OPPORTUNITY TO KNOW YOUR NEEDS. BE HEALTHY”.
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