Lekki Toll-Gate: NIPR Condemns ‘Shooting’ of Protesters, Calls for Investigation
The Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR), has expressed concern over the bloodshed, wanton vandalization, and looting of properties as a result of the ongoing #ENDSARS protest in Lekki and other parts of the country.
This was made known by its President, Mr. Mukhtar Sirajo, at a press briefing in Abuja.
Mr. Sirajo, while noting that the Institute’s resolve to be a passive observer during the initial stage of the #EndSARS demonstrations was due to the conduct of the protesters and government.
He however, said the descent to anarchy in the past two days has however necessitated a shift from them being a silent observer.
“NIPR condemns unequivocally, the reported shooting of protesters at the Lekki toll gate in Lagos on Tuesday.
“The resort to the use of arms against unarmed protesters who were exercising their constitutional rights is against the tenets of decency and democracy and therefore unacceptable.
“We equally condemn, in no uncertain terms, resort to the hooliganism that ensued afterward which led to arson, and looting of both public and private properties,” he added.
The NIPR boss, said their Institute beliefs that the lawlessness has nothing to do with the original objectives of the #ENDSARS movement, which he said was against impunity and an agitation for good governance.
Sirajo, added that NIPR, as a body, respects citizens’ right to peaceful dissent, as well as government’s responsibility to maintain law and order.
“There is nothing wrong with citizens coming together to demand a better deal from their governments with genuine protest, but protesters must be cautious of infiltrators who are willing to change the motive and resort to lawlessness.
“It is imperative that the government brace up for more accountability by engaging citizens in dialogue about the way forward, and also improve its line of communication with Nigerians for timely action that seeks to make life better for the people,” he stated.
While appealing to the protesters to call off the protest, having made their points, and in view of the fact that it has been infiltrated and hijacked, the NIPR President, called on the government to be committed in addressing the issues raised.