A former National Public Relations Officer (PRO) of Muslim Lawyers’ Association of Nigeria (MULAN), Barrister Abdul Wasiu Amoo and the Executive Director of Prisoners Rights Advocacy Initiative (PRAI), Mr. Ahmad Adetola Kazeem have said the conveners of the ongoing #EndSARS protest have lost focus.
The two Muslim lawyers made the disclosure in separate statements, insisting that the protests which entered Day 10, lack strategy and focus.
Muslim News reports that the a section of Nigerian Youths have taken to the streets and flooded the internet with calls for the disbandment of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), following cases of harassments, extortion and extra-judicial killings levelled against its officials.
The message of the protests was heard loud and clear as the presidency in collaboration with the police authorities swiftly announced the dissolution of the controversial police unit, while pledging reform in the Force, with the immediate creation of SWAT.
The protests, we reliably gathered, have now taken a new turn in different States including Lagos, Abuja, Edo and Osun as hoodlums have allegedly hijacked the protests, leading to killing of innocent Nigerians and vandalisation of property.
— #EndSWAT (@Iphanyii) October 18, 2020
Speaking with Muslim News, Barrister Amoo said, “It is obvious from the happenings now that the conveners of the protests and the protesters have lost focus and at this juncture, the best for them is to retreat to re-strategize. It is no more peaceful protests; it has become violent protests, wreaking havoc on innocent members of the society.”
According to him, protest all over the world is always peaceful without violence or blocking of roads or attacking people.
He added: “I saw a video where the protesters used car to knock a man down, another one where girls were raped and the youth who rescued them called on the same police for help. We need to really lend our voices to this issue, because it is already out of hand.
“It is expected that by now they should give opportunity to the Government to attend to the demands placed on their table and use the opportunity to re-strategize, but unfortunately they are adamant on continuing the protest even when it is no more peaceful.”
In a related development, Mr. Adetola Kazeem said thugs have hijacked the #EndSARS protests in most of the places, urging that it’s time to withdraw.
The Executive Director of PRAI, Mr. Adetola-Kazeem, who noted that the protest lacks strategy and focus, emphasised that withdrawal is not cowardice.
He made this assertion in a series of posts made on his Facebook page, monitored by Muslim News, between October 18 – October 20, 2020.
In his words, “The agberos have taken over from the frosh (elite youths). The only territory still under the firm control of the frosh is Lekki and Alausa. We have inadvertently empowered monsters that will hunt us.
“The greatest strength of the protest was blocking the road (for argument sake, it got the government’s attention), its greatest weakness was doing it for too long.
I agree that we should have strategic protest grounds to avoid thugs hijacking our peaceful protests. Nigerian youths protesting should meet only on those grounds. That way we are together, more secured, coordinated and efficient. #EndSARS
— DeboMacaroni (@mrmacaronii) October 19, 2020
“The Frosh blocked few major roads to party, eat, drink and smoke. The Agberos are blocking major and inner roads to collect toll fees and rob people.
“May we not destroy ourselves with our hands!” he said.
Commenting further, Adetola-Kazeem noted: “When we tell them that the protest lacks strategy and focus and can only lead to doom, they will be shouting yen yen yen. Know this, it is not only the tush and frosh guys that are protesting, Criminals and rogues are also part of this, let it sink.
“Is it hard to understand that there are visible gains already, appoint representatives to negotiate with government and monitor progress.
“Don’t come here shouting that the disruptors are sponsored, no one needs to sponsor those whose means of livelihood has been cut short because of roadblocks. THINK!!!
“Withdrawal is not cowardice!”
The lawyer, whose organisation offers free legal, rehabilitation and reintegration services to prison inmates and ex-convicts, categorised those participating in the current protest into ten, advancing that there is no unity of purpose in the struggle.
Just in: Angry mob set police station ablaze in Orile Iganmu, Lagos State pic.twitter.com/r1Ue583OZo
— Instablog9ja (@instablog9ja) October 20, 2020
“1. Those who want to see the country disintegrate at all cost.
2. Fifth columnists waiting to profit from arms and mineral resources deals.
3. Those who want to promote their brand through the seeming popularity of the protest.(Most Influencers fall within this category)
4. Those who feel genuinely hurt.
5. Those just following bandwagon or their influencers.
6. Those catching cruise with the free food, DJ and opportunity to mix with the opposite sex
7. Those who want to smuggle ideologies not in tandem with current position of the law into the struggle (e.g LGBTQ).
8. Criminals who want to keep committing crimes unhindered.
9. Ethnic and religious bigots.
10. Those who hate President Buhari with a passion and want him out at all cost before the next elections.
Don’t be deceived there is no unity of purpose in the current struggle!!!