The police in Lagos State on Monday warned against planned protests in commemoration of last year’s #EndSARS protests.
The #EndSARS protests were held across the country last year as a campaign against police brutality but came to a halting end after Nigerian security officials allegedly shot at unarmed protesters at the Lekki toll gate on October 20.
The protests were also marked by wanton loss of lives and properties.
Several individuals and groups have publicly indicated an interest in honouring the lives of those lost during the protests.
But according to a statement signed by police spokesperson, Adekunle Ajisebutu, the planned protests may lead to a “breakdown of law and order.”
“Credible intelligence at the disposal of the Command has revealed clandestine plans by some youths, individuals or groups to embark on protest today in commemoration of one year anniversary of ENDSARS,” the police statement said.
“Lagosians and indeed Nigerians cannot afford to relive the distasteful experience of last year protest which caused pain, anguish, needless loss of lives and wanton destruction of public and private property.
“In view of the volatility of the present situations in the country, and the breakdown of law and order which the planned protest might cause, the Lagos State Police Command sternly warns against any form of protest today.
“The Command wishes to use this medium to warn the youths, groups, or associations planning such protest to jettison the idea forthwith. The police in the state will not fold their arms and allow some misguided elements disrupt the peace and serenity currently being enjoyed in the state.
“To forestall breakdown of law and order, the police will use all legitimate means within their constitutional powers to suppress the planned protest.”
The police also advised parents and guardians to warn their children against participating in the protests.
“Individuals or groups sponsoring such protest are also warned in their own interest to desist from such unpatriotic plan or face the full weight or wrath of the law,” the statement added.
“Meanwhile, the Commissioner of Police, CP Hakeem Odumosu assures all law-abiding residents of the state to go about their legitimate businesses without fear of harassment or intimidation. Adequate, additional security measures have been put in place to ensure protection of their lives and property today and even beyond.”