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One Year Anniversary: Falana To Buhari: Police Must Not Disrupt Peaceful EndSars Protest

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Falana

Human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to abide by his oath of office by calling on the police not to disrupt upcoming #EndSARS protests.

Falana, who is the Interim Chairman, Alliance on Surviving COVID-19 and Beyond, said this in a statement on Thursday titled, ‘Nigeria Police Force Lacks Power to Ban Public Protests in Nigeria’.

The Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Hakeem Odumosu, had said the police would not allow anyone to stage another #EndSARS protest ahead of the one-year anniversary of the protests of last year.

However, Falana said Buhari who himself took part in protests while he was running for office, should call on the police to respect the rights of citizens.

He added, “It is public knowledge that General Muhammadu Buhari (as he then was) and other leaders of the ruling All Progressive Congress took part in public rallies against fuel hike in January 2012 and protests against insecurity in November 2014.

“To that extent, the Buhari administration ought to restrain the Police from banning peaceful rallies against police brutality on October 20, 2021 in any manner whatsoever and however.”

Falana noted that the law guarantees Nigerians the right to hold public meetings, rallies and processions in the country.

“The threats against peaceful rallies oozing out of the police headquarters and state commands are illegal as they constitute a gross infringement of the fundamental rights of the Nigerian people to freedom of expression and freedom of assembly guaranteed by Sections 38 and 40 of the Nigerian Constitution as well as Articles 9 and 10 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights Act,” the activist added.

He recalled that in the case of the All Nigeria People’s Party v Inspector-General of Police 2006, Justice Anwuli Chikere declared that police permit as a precondition for holding rallies in Nigeria was illegal and unconstitutional.

The judge consequently granted an order of perpetual injunction restraining the Inspector-General of Police and other police officers from preventing Nigerian citizens from convening and participating in rallies.

“The appeal of the police against the judgment was dismissed by the Court of Appeal in December 2007. In the unanimous decision of the court, their lordships described police permit as ‘a relic of colonialism’ which is anomalous in a democratic society,” Falana said.

He added that based on the landmark judgment of the Court of Appeal, the National Assembly amended the Electoral Act 2010 in March 2015 to impose a duty on the police to provide security for participants in public meetings and rallies.

“For the avoidance of doubt, Section 94 (4) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) provides: Notwithstanding any provision in the Police Act, the Public Order Act and any regulation made thereunder or any other law to the contrary, the role of the Nigeria Police Force in political rallies, processions and meetings shall be limited to the provision of adequate security as provided in subsection (1) of this section,” the senior advocate said.

He added that Section 83 (4) of the Police Establishment Act 2020 provides that where a person or organisation notifies the police of his or its intention to hold a public meeting, rally or procession on a public highway or such meetings in a place where the public has access to, the police officer responsible for the area where the meeting rally or procession will take place shall mobilise personnel to provide security cover for the meeting, rally or the procession.


“In view of the fact that the police authorities have been notified of the public rallies scheduled to hold on October 20, 2020 to mark the first year anniversary of the #EndSARS protests, the Nigeria Police Force is required to make arrangements for the provision of adequate security for the participants at the venues of the rallies,” Falana said.

He called on the Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Usman Alkali, to direct the Commissioners of Police in all the states of the Federation to ensure that adequate security is provided for all citizens who may wish to protest against the policies of the government which are considered inimical to their interests.

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Gunmen Abduct 13 Passengers In Niger

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The Police Command in Niger on Wednesday confirmed the abduction of thirteen passengers by gunmen at Konar Barau village of Rafi Local Government Area of the state.

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Monday Kuryas, confirmed the incident in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Minna.

Kuryas said that at about 1530 hours, the DPO of Zungeru reported that one Mubarak Idris of Kwanawa village, Sokoto State, a driver of an 18-seater bus with registration number LGT 12 XWX loaded with 18 passengers from Yauwuri Kebbi state mostly fishermen heading to Yenagoa Bayelsa state on fishing activities, reported the matter to the police.

He said Idris reported that on getting to Konar Barau sharp bend under Rafi local government area along Tegina — Minna road, suspected bandits in military uniform kidnapped 13 of his passengers and his motor boy.

He said the gunmen also dispossessed the driver with N131,500.

The commissioner said that already aggressive manhunt for the hoodlums had commenced and solicited the support of residents, especially those in rural areas, to assist the police with reliable information that could lead to the arrest of the miscreants.

” We appeal to residents to volunteer reliable information that could aid in apprehending miscreants in the state.

” We are doing everything humanly possible to ensure the protection of lives and property in our area of supervision.

” All we require from residents is vital intelligence information that could aid the security personnel deployed across the state on movement of dubious characters in their midst for necessary security action,” he said.

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Blame Sanwo-Olu For Police Harassment Of EndSARS Protesters In Lagos, Adeyanju Insists

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Deji Adeyanju, an Abuja-based activist, has disclosed that Sanwo Olu should be blamed over the harassment of EndSARS protesters in Lagos State.

The convener of Concerned Nigerian advocacy group made the remark while commending the police and Department of State Services, DSS, for conducting themselves orderly in Abuja.

In a tweet, Adeyanju said police and DSS operatives should be commended for not violating the rights of Abuja residents.

According to Adeyanju: “The police and DSS in Abuja were professional today. They did not violate protester’s rights and this is a big win for the Federal Government. We have nothing personal against the Government.

“When they behave right, we will praise them. Governor Sanwo Olu is to be blamed for harassment of protesters in Lagos today.”

Police officers had brutalized and arrested some EndSARS protesters in Lagos State.

The protesters had filed out to mark the one year anniversary of the EndSARS massacre in Lekki tollgate.

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Grab Man United Job If Contacted, Domenech Tells Zidane

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Former France coach Raymond Domenech has urged Zinedine Zidane to accept the chance of managing Manchester United if the opportunity is open.

Domenech made this known in an interview with L’Equipe TV, where he said that the former Real Madrid coach has the capability to turn around the fortune of the Red Devils.

Recall that on Tuesday, Cristiano Ronaldo has reportedly approached Manchester United chiefs and recommended the club replace manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with Zinedine Zidane.

Pressure has mounted on Solskjaer following Manchester United’s 4-2 defeat at the hands of Leicester City over the weekend.

Although reports have indicated that Zidane has no interest in a move to the Premier League, Domenech is urging the former Real Madrid to have a rethink.

“What job is he made for when he’s been a multiple Champions League with Real Madrid? What’s left? [Manchester] City, United, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich? There’s five or six clubs. After that, if he takes another club, they’re a step down for him, for someone of his level.

“There comes a point when you can’t let that possibility slip. He’s also got, with [Cristiano] Ronaldo, a direct relay, a translator from Spanish to English.

“He’ll also get away from people who say he only achieved what he did because it was Real Madrid because he knew the players and he’ll prove he’s really a top manager. That’s why I tell him: go for it. Or stay in your comfort, but I don’t think that’s his desire.”

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