… As Group calls for peace, truce between protesting youths, government***
The Ondo State Police Command has confirmed the death of two policemen and a civilian in the aftermath of the EndSARS protest which was subsequently hijacked by hoodlums.
The Commissioner of Police (CP) in the state, Mr Bolaji Salami, made this known while parading 18 suspected looters and arsonists before newsmen in Akure on Tuesday.
Salami explained that the two policemen were killed in Ore, Odigbo Local Government Area (LGA), and Ondo town, in Ondo East LGA, respectively.
According to him, the victim in Ore was mobbed, while the policeman in Ondo was killed and burnt inside his car.
“The civilian casualty was one of the three-man gang that attempted to rob a new generation bank in Ondo town,” he said.
Salami explained that the suspects used the EndSARS protest as a cover-up for the alleged crimes of looting, destruction, arson, stealing and armed robbery at various parts of the state.
“A total of 18 suspects were apprehended in connection with the crimes by the police at different locations of the state.
“Out of the figures, 9 suspects were nabbed for alleged arson, looting, murder, and aiding of detainees’ escape.
“For those who looted our property, burnt our homes, killed our colleagues, denied us the right to decent living, I am glad to say that the law is not sleeping and will take its course on you,” he said.
In another development, Leading Right Group (LRG), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), has joined well-meaning Nigerians and friends of the nation calling for peace amongst youths while urging them to embrace truce.
The organisation also told them to suspend the #ENDPOLICEBRUTALITY# protests and reach a point of understanding with the government.
The President of the NGO, Mr Uyeh Akadakhaene, made this call in a statement made available to newsmen.
It was issued by his Secretary, Dr Iyore Idemudia, on Tuesday in Abuja urging the Nigerian youth to do so for the sake of prosterity and overall well-being of the nation.
“While LRG recognises the right of the Nigerian youth as it is inherent in a democracy such as ours, to peaceful protest, it believes firmly that the voice of the youth has been heard loud and clear.
“The ball is now undoubtedly in the court of the authorities at both Federal and states levels to address the legitimate concerns raised by Nigerians.
‘’In the same vein, LRG is deeply saddened by the tragic turn of events which saw otherwise peaceful protests degenerate into a scuffle that resulted in avoidable loss of lives, livelihoods and property.
“LRG mourns the dead and is in shared grief with the bereaved; May the Almighty God comfort them and heal our land.” he said.
Akadakhaene commended the setting up of the various Judicial Panels of Inquiry by state governments for this purpose and called for quick dispensation of justice.
“LRG is persuaded sufficiently to believe that the spontaneous and simultaneous protests that swept across the length and breadth of the country and beyond were, for all intents and purposes, a convenient outlet for expression of accumulated frustration and anger by the young people of Nigeria.
“They rightly feel that, over the years, their fatherland has neither treated them justly nor fairly.
“For the avoidance of doubt, LRG condemns in the strongest terms possible the killings, by security operatives, of innocent youths whose only offense was that they asked for Police reform and, by implication, a better society.
He said that LRG was strongly advocating the implementation of the recommendations to be submitted by the various Judicial Panels across the nation.
He stated that this was in order to bury the culture of slow or non-implementation of recommendations of Panels and Committees over the years and with a view to kick-starting a new approach to governance and policy implementation.
According to the organisation, this will boost the confidence of the youth in the sincerity of government.
“LRG wishes to recommend “family dialogue” between the authorities and the youth to satisfactorily resolve all issues pertaining to the protests and their tragic aftermath.
“The Group is willing and ready to play a “facilitator and partner” role in the search for a lasting solution,” he said.
He appealed to the authorities to collaborate with the youth and do all within their means to earn the trust of Nigerians.
The LRG is a group of patriotic young professionals at the vanguard of resetting leadership standards for Nigeria.