At a press conference held at the Youth Centre in Wuse Zone 3 of Abuja on November 3rd, 2020, the Vice President North-Central of the National Youth Council of Nigeria, Mr. Muktar Akoshile, expressed grave concerns about the recent resumed #ENDSARS protests by some Nigerians. The press conference, which was co-chaired by Mr. Yunusa Ahmadu Yusuf, of the Abuja Grassroots Youth Forum, called on the security agencies in Nigeria, to immediately nip these renewed protests in the bud, and arrest anyone aiming at fermenting trouble within the Abuja metropolis.
The press release put out at the end of the press conference further reads;
Gentlemen of the press
It is with great delight that I address you on behalf of the Grassroots people of the Federal Capital Territory Administration on some national but disturbing issues.
2. We the Abuja Grassroots Youths Forum,, wish to categorically state that we are highly disappointed with the Nigerian Security apparatus, for their lackadaisical attitude towards some unscrupulous Nigerians, who ceaselessly contributed before now, to the wanton destruction of lives and property within the nation’s capital, Abuja.
3. It has been observed that in recent times, Abuja has become a melting point for protests and agitations. It is expected because this is the seat of government, and all arms of government are domicile in this great city including diplomats of other countries.
4. However, given the sensitive position of Abuja, it is expected that things including protest/agitation should be carried out with all sense of civility and decorum. Sadly, recent events and developments have shown the contrary.
5. While we support any progressive and peaceful demonstration by any group, we are at the same breath adverse to unruly behavior of some unscrupulous characters in the guise of agitation. On this note, we unambiguously today, call for the immediate arrest of Messrs Sowore and Adeyanju, as well as Aishat Yesufu, for deliberately misleading Nigerian youths into chaos, looting and murders which we know were of course perpetrated by individuals who hitherto hijacked the peaceful #ENDSARS protests.
6. It has come to our knowledge that youths across Nigeria, were lured through social media and other platforms to embark on the #ENDSARS protests which however took an ugly turn and was on the verge of throwing Nigeria into another lockdown for which many Nigerians do not desire, as they are just putting their lives together, having narrowly survived the COVID-19 lockdown.
7. It is on record that Mr. Sowore, through the ballot contested the presidential position with other prominent Nigerians including the incumbent president, but lost out in that well acclaimed free and fair election. However, like a wounded lion, he embarked on hate campaign against the sovereign State of Nigeria.
8. Before now, his cohorts cajoled Nigerians especially our vibrant youths into believing that the #ENDSARS protest was a movement for a better Nigeria, until it was hijacked by hoodlums who unleashed terrible forms of mayhem on our cities. No doubt, the consequences of the protest are still staring on our faces. To say the least, we are highly disappointed that having initiated these satanic agitations via the Social Media and other means of publications, these same set of person are still moving freely within our cities.
9. Today, it is no longer news that they are indiscriminately painting the words #ENDSARS on some of our prestigious institutions within the FCT, and celebrating themselves as heroes, and if left unchecked, may lead to further mayhem, for which we are strongly opposed to. Such action, if left unchecked could undeniably bring back gory memories to mothers, fathers, and many who lost their loved ones, as well as to traders and businessmen and women who lost their means of livelihood.
10. It is hypocritical and deceitful to have informed Nigerians that the protest had no leaders. But today, some persons have come out to lay claim that they are leaders of the #ENDSARS protests, which led to loss of many lives and property. It is indeed a matter of urgency, that they should be arrested forthwith and held liable for the chaos and mayhem witnessed during and after the protests.
11. We, the indigenous people of the FCT, we remain resolute in our determination, that some individuals who directly or indirectly triggered the destruction of private and government owned facilities cannot hold the FCT hostage, while still walking freely today.
12. On the other hand, we wish to call on the government of Nigeria to immediately address the issues of ASUU strike, as it has taken too long to resolve. Our children and youths are tired of remaining at home. They deserve an optimum/functional educational sector. They have suddenly become a tool in the hands of these undesirable elements. Before now, our educational rating at the global level is poor, and the prolonged strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities will further worsen our educational standard. We call on both parties to reach a truce and call off the strike immediately. Enough Is Enough.
13. Thank you for your attention.
The press release was jointly signed by Mr. Muktar Akoshile and Mr. Yunusa Ahmadu Yusuf.