I am writing this to express, not to impress, but the pleasure will be mine if you feel impressed. By looking at the rate at which people are tensed and unreasonably joining the #EndSARS movement, this is more than enough to tell you that, “An idle mind is the devil’s workshop”.
At this juncture, people are subjectively siding with whom they were in support of, since before the commencement of the riot, thus are often taken away by emotion, for their love or solidarity for whom they consider to be theirs.
I will not be just to the entire protesters if I label them whole as violent or having a suspicious motive for hyperbolizing this whole issue and taking it to the next level of violence destabilizing the peace and tranquility of the innocent inhabitants of the areas taken as the venues for the riot, the unit operates in their region, they are in a better position to speak up.
The plotters of the #EndSARS protest might have started it purely with the intention of drawing the attention of the government to what has been a threat to their lives and wellbeing, which has been troubling them for quite a long time; and they are now having the chance to cry out.
However, the structure and manner in which the protest is being done is closer to creating more problems and doing more harm than good to the communities as it has started to yield negative results in some states, especially in the Southern Nigeria, and Northern part of the country as well.
Besides, what is baffling most people is the fact that the protest was basically to see that the police unit in question is disbanded, which was done not long after the start of the riot. But surprisingly, the strong voices behind the protest have continued to incite their followers to put more pressure on the government by employing new strategies. The protesters’ suspicion is that the total scrap of the unit was deceptive, they need to see real actions on ground – in spite of assurances by the inspector general of police that none of the members of the disbanded SARS unit will be in the newly created SWAT unit.
There are many things that seem confusing which are happening in the protest. I just don’t want to be interpreted as being subjective, our concern is the peace of the country at large.
But there’s no denial in the fact that this hyperbolic riot is causing a serious discord within the societies with underlying crisis. Plateau state is the typical example regarding this, the riot has holistically changed its dimensions to something else.
You also do not have to expect less than what is happening now, because, from the youth’s side who are involved in the riot, they have no single voice whom they follow his orders. The protests are mostly incited by the influencial personalities on and off the social media platforms, especially the Twitter platform. They use such platforms to raise funds and convey the message they need to pass on to the protesters.
However, the protests have now changed colour, which endangers more lives than before. We don’t support opening fire on the protesters with all the violent steps they have employed already. The deadly criminal groups we have been battling with in the country were also not initially handled professionally, which led them to grow into global criminal associations.
As some of our clerics appeal to the government, we are also following their footsteps calling on the government to listen to the protesters for the second time, and respond to their requests, for nobody will be interested to witness the unceasing attacks and insecurity situation that became norms in the countries which such tiny movements transformed them into a graveyards, such as Sudan, among others.
If they detest the reconcilation process, we advise the government to follow all the ways possible and use the strategies at their disposal to bring an end to this protest for the peace and stability of the general populace.
Idris writes via