Following the violence being recorded in different parts of Lagos over #EndSARS protest, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Lagos State governor, has said he would meet with Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari, over the protests.
The governor said this while addressing protesters at Lekki toll-gate on Monday.
Mr Sanwo-Olu received a cold welcome from the protesters who kept chanting ‘shame, shame,’ during his speech.
According to a statement shared by Jubril Gawat, the special adviser to Mr Sanwo-Olu on media, the governor will visit the president on Tuesday.
According to the statement, Mr Sanwo-Olu identified with the EndSARS campaigners, noting that their agitations touched the essence of democratic freedom.
He said citizens must never be denied the rights to protest, but urged the protesters not to employ wrong methods to drive home their message.
“Your voice has been heard clearly and a clear pronouncement has been made on the activities of SARS. The operation has been dissolved by the police leadership and just a moment ago, Mr President addressed the nation on the issues you have raised. The President has said all SARS officers that are involved in the killing of innocent people and engaging in human rights abuses will be brought to justice.
“My stance on this EndSARS is unmistakable and I have told you that we identify with this protest because you have legitimate concerns. I am saying it again here that this protest is in good faith. But, we must not be unruly when going out on a protest like this. We want you to be peaceful and decorous in expressing yourselves.”
The state governor added that he spoke with the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Muhammed Adamu, on Monday, to outline the position of the Lagos State Government on police reforms, adding that he will visit President Buhari on Tuesday to present the demands of Lagos youth on the issues.
While praising the courage of the protesters, the governor pleaded with them not to block the roads while passing on their grievances to the authorities.
PREMIUM TIMES reported how several major roads, including the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, were blocked by protesters during the Monday protest.
One protester was shot dead in Surulere while others were attacked in places like Barracks and Ojuelegba area. The protesters launched a reprisal attack on police officers in the area, injuring no fewer than three police officers.
According to the statement, the protesters, during the governor’s speech, were largely uncoordinated. They rebuffed pleas to open the road and demanded the physical presence of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“The protesters remained unruly but the Governor made his point – they should not allow their legitimate campaign hijacked by hoodlums who may have another agenda.
“Sanwo-Olu agreed with the demand of the protesters on reforms in the operations of law enforcement agencies, adding that the State Government would work with the police leadership on compensation for the family members of victims of SARS brutality in Lagos,” the statement added.