By Johnpaul Anih, 23 – 10 – 2020
I appeal for understanding and calm across the State as the implementation of the reforms in the Nigeria Police gathers pace at Federal and State levels.
Firstly, I wish to convey my heartfelt sympathy to those who have been negatively affected in one way or the other throughout the period of the protest in some parts of the country. May the souls of those who died in the course of this protest rest in peace.
It is unfortunate, the avoidable incidents happened, as I sue for peace. I condemn the unfortunate use of excessive force, hence the loss of lives in trying to quench the protest in some parts of the country.
I appeal to the Federal Government to do everything possible to ensure that justice is served, and hasten up the wholistic reform of Nigeria Police.
Our Peace loving Governor of Our beloved State, Rt Hon Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has shown commitment to concerns of our youth protesting the end of Police brutality. The Governor has come out to address the protesters for over two times more than any other governor has done, and also the deputy Governor has also addressed the protesters on behalf of the Governor. The Governor stands side by side with the Nigerian Youth and Youth of Enugu State in particular.
The youth mean well for asking for the end of Police brutality, and for the right thing to be done. It is well appreciated.
Protest is legal, and part of the ingredients of democracy. With good intentions, the protest started on a good note, but along the line, some bad elements infiltrated into the folds of the peaceful protesters and started destroying public and private property for no just cause.
I wish to call on the Youth of Enugu State to embrace peace and not to give the miscreants the chance to carry out their nefarious activities on the State.
Dear good youth of Enugu State, we cannot destroy what we have suffered to build over the strenuous years to make Enugu State what it is today. We should not allow miscreants to cause us more harms.
The Youth of Enugu State do not support and cannot be part of any group destroying public and private property, harassing and disturbing the good residents of Enugu State. The destruction of public and private property is not part of the deal, it is not part of the idea for the end of police brutality. It does not represent the Youth of Nigeria and Youth of Enugu State in particular. It does not represent the harmony and peace we enjoy in Enugu State. We must protect Enugu State.
Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS has been disbanded. That is a good step in addressing your agitation for end of Police brutality. Our Amiable Governor of Enugu State, Rt Hon Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has gone to SARS facility to ensure the closure of the facility, and SARS facility in Enugu has been shut down forever.
Also, our Governor has consituted a Judicial Panel of Inquiry on Police brutality and related extra-judicial killings, and our youth are well represented in the panel.
These are some of the efforts in place to address your grievances, as more are coming to nip the issue in the bud.
The decision to impose a 24-hour curfew in Enugu North, Enugu East and Enugu South LGAs of the state by the Government is as a result of the hijack of the peaceful #EndSARS protests by miscreants who planned to unleash mayhem in our dear state.
This curfew is in line with the Governor’s primary responsibility of protection of lives and livelihoods of all law-abiding residents in the state.
Be rest assured that the Governor of Enugu State His Excellency Rt Hon Dr. Lawrence Ugwuanyi is working assiduously day and night to address this issue at stake.
Let there be peace and calm, as the final solution is sought.
Hon Manfred Nzekwe,
Honourable Commissioner for Youth & Sports, Enugu State.