By Emeka Nwokocha
As the supposedly peaceful EndSARS protest embarked by youths across Nigeria takes a violent twist, leading to loss of lives across the nation, frontline human rights defender, the Conference for the Actualisation of Human Rights (CAHR), has appealed to the protesting youths in Delta State and across the country to sheath the swords to avert further bloodshed.
While making the appeal via a press statement on Friday 23 October, in Effurun, Delta State, the National Director General of CAHR, Barr. Omes Ogedegbe, passionatety appealed to the aggrieved youths to suspend the protest, saying that the call became necessary in order to forestall further loss of lives, destruction of property and breakdown of law and order, even as he noted that criminal elements had since hijacked the protest with attendant mayhem witnessed across the country in recent times.
Barr. Ogedegbe, who spoke to a crowd of the protesters, in company of the State Secretary of CAHR, Comrade Isreal Arigbe, State Director of CAHR, Comrade Monday Enudi, and other executive members of CAHR, took a swipe at the President Muhammadu Buhari’s nation wide broadcast, saying the President’s speech did not meet the expectations of Nigerians, by failing to mention the dozens of innocent and unarmed young protesters killed at Lekki toll gate on Tuesday 20 October.
The press statement reads in full:
“Good morning great Nigerian youths, you have spoken loud and clear, the world has heard us. Mr President’s speech seems not to inspire the desired empathy, trust and hope. Our absolute hope is in God in whom every good thing is possible. Let us therefore retreat at this point and strategically enthrone younger visionary persons as President, Governors, Senators, Representatives, Chairmen of councils and other political appointees to rebuild a bastardized Nigeria in grip of a few political spent forces. Obviously, we are tired of clueless and visionless people leading us without hope in sight.”
“Our sympathy and condolences go to the families of those who lost their loved ones in the struggle. They are the real heroes of the new Nigeria that is about to be born democratically and they have written their names in gold in the annals of world history, and by the help of God, through our collective and patriotic efforts, we shall make the desired change happen, because a bad system be it spiritual or physical that is not addressed timely will get worse in no time.”
The statement continued, “to those criminal elements who took and may still take undue advantage of a very formidable youth peaceful protest to destroy properties and creating so much unrest in the country, we admonish them to stop forthwith. Let us give peace a chance so that together we can build a greater Nigeria of our dream.
“To those political office holders who run Nigeria aground with their primitive and toxic mindset, crooked acquisition of wealth at the expense of the larger populace in the past and present, we admonish them to turn a new leaf now. Nigerians have woken up and are wiser now than ever. We are more determined to hold them accountable for their failed leadership at one time or the other. God is on our side!”
“Our gratitude goes to God for everything, and special appreciation to great Nigerian Youths, Civil Society Organizations, good spirited Nigerians who stood their ground for the success of the protest till now. Nigeria shall be great again.
“God have mercy on us. God bless Nigeria.”