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Defiant youths dare govt., to continue with #OccupyLekkiTollGate protest despite warnings

Youths have continued to remain undaunted in their resolve to demonstrate at the Lekki toll gate Lagos State on Saturday. This is despite warnings from the state and federal governments, including the police, that no form of protest will be allowed in the state at this time.

The angry youths had choosed February 13, to register their displeasure at the resolution of the Lagos State judicial panel whose members endorsed through voting the reopening of the premises shut down after soldiers opened live rounds on protesters last year October 20 during the historic protest demanding extensive police reforms and scrapping of its brutal unit.

While the federal government through its Information Minister Lai Mohammed said such conducts at toll gates will henceforth be prohibited, the Lagos State government and its police command banned all forms of gathering in the name of protest.

But the defiant youths have vowed not to abort the demonstrations, accusing the government of insincerity.

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In a Thursday press statement titled, ‘EndSARS Season 2: Why we will #OccupyLekkiTollGate on Saturday’, the protest organisers said: “After commiting genocide by killing scores of people who were peacefully protesting at Lekki Toll Gate and other parts of Lagos, Governor Sanwo-Olu and other oppressors wants to spit on the dead and dance on the blood of the innocent by reopening the yahoo gate to be collecting their blood money as again.

“We say NO! We are undaunted! We will be occupying Lekki Toll Gate again starting from Saturday February 13. We urge all well-meaning Nigerians to storm back all the barricades, as our rulers have shown that they can never change. Since the #EndSARS, they are yet to affect any of the promises. Police brutality is still raging and SARS is still operating.

“Despite overwhelming and highly compelling evidence showing how several protesters were shot by the military, no single military official has been brought to book.

“Deaths have been established and many victims of the Lekki shootings have surfaced, yet neither the victims nor families of our deceased colleagues have got justice.

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“After close to five months of sitting, the judicial panel meant to inquire into the Lekki massacre has refused to deliver justice to victims of the massacre most of whom have either lost their limbs due to gun wounds or have become deceased.

“Government has refused to provide employment for young people, yet they went ahead to ban the most promising source of income of young people: cryptocurrency. Nigerians are extremely poor and yet the cost of food is on the high side with increased cost of electricity that only produces darkness. Petrol price is being increased as marketers want it at N190 per litre.

“Nigerians are no longer secure in any part of the country; when they are not being harassed or extrajudicially murdered by police, they are being kidnapped, mimed and killed by bandits. Today, the life of a cow has become more valuable than those of Nigerians, even as our streets and communities have fallen to the rule of kidnappers and bandits.

“The Nigerian government now negotiates and enriches terrorists and bandits while chasing after, arresting, shooting and killing protesters. It is to this end that we call on you all to come out en masse to demand not just justice for victims and fallen heroes of the October 20 killings but that all involved in this heinous criminality be brought to book. Come out to demand the right to life and to exist in a country that respects our rights as citizens, abhors police brutality/extrajudicial killings, provides us with security, decent jobs with good wages and other such socio-economic rights that come with being a citizen.”

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