National

Police, army arrest #RevolutionNow protesters in Abuja, others

Some #RevolutionNow protesters have been arrested by officials of the police and the Nigerian Army in the country’s capital city Abuja on Wednesday.

The #RevolutionNow protest convened by former presidential candidate Omoyele Sowore is taking in many states across Nigeria.

Sowore said the protest aimed at demanding good governance and justice from the Nigerian government.

Sahara Reporters, owned by Sowore, reports that about 40 protesters have been arrested across the country as at 11:00 am on Wednesday. An activist Deji Adeyanju put the figure of those arrested at 60.

The protesters bore banners and placards that said ‘Nigerians are sick and tired of poverty, corruption, injustice, Say no to injustice and other inscriptions.

The protesters, many of whom wore orange berets, converged on the Unity Fountain, Shehu Shagari Way, Maitama, and were about to begin their procession when security agents arrived the venue to dispersed them and arrested some of them in the process.

Soldiers and other security operatives also cordoned off adjoining streets including Aguiyi Ironsi Street to prevent the protesters from marching.

Elsewhere in Osogbo, Osun State capital, security officials arrested Olawale Bakare and six other #Revolutionnow protesters.

Bakare, known as ‘Mandate’ led the protesters in Osogbo who bore placards had converged on Correspondents’ chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists located in the area.

The reported arrests and dispersal of the protesters have been condemned by some civil society organisations in the country. They said the arrests were undemocratic and violation of the protester’s human rights.

“The right to peaceful protests, assembly and association is fully guaranteed by the constitution (sec39 and 40). Peaceful protest is not a crime,” EiE Nigeria tweeted.

Amnesty International in Nigeria in a tweet said the ‘peaceful protest’ is a human right and should not be denied anyone demanding accountability and good governance.

It called on the Nigerian security forces “to end the ongoing attack on protesters at Unity Fountain, Abuja and across the country. (The) protest is a human right and use of excessive force on protesters is unlawful.”

None of the security agencies of the Nigerian government has spoken about the reported arrest of the protesters in different parts of the country as at the time of filing this report.

Source: guardian.ng