By Suraju Raji
The Lagos State House of Assembly has on Thursday concluded that the End SARS protest is legally right but resulted to breach of peace. It could be recalled that some aggrieved citizens of Nigeria on October 20th embarked on protest, calling on the Federal Government to ban Anti Robbery Squad of the Nigeria Police.
There is a rationale in their protest with reference to section 40 of the 1999 constitution which states “every person shall be entitled to assemble freely and associate with other persons and in particular he may form or belong to any political party, trade union or any other association for the protection of his interest.
However, the section 45 of the 1999 constitution prohibits any act that invalidate any law that is reasonably justifiable in democratic society in the interest of defense, public safety, public order, public morality or public health etc. Section 45 further stated “the clause is for the purpose of protection of the rights and freedom of other persons”
As protesters calling for end of SARS were raging, hoodlums went on rampage. They burnt police stations and government properties like the NTA, Shoprite business edifices and looted business houses.
Meanwhile, the Lagos state house of assembly during the plenary harped on the happenings in the Lagos state which according to the Lagos State commissioner of Police, Hakeem Odumosu has resulted in the death of six police men and 36 seriously injured.
The speaker Lagos state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa said while responding to the happenings in Lagos stated that the events that have taken over our state and by extension Nigeria within the past 2 weeks regarding the END SARS protests and its aftermath are such that call for concerns in their entirety. “You will recall that this House of Assembly was the first in the nation to identify with the cause of the youths asking for an end to police brutality in the nation. We unanimously threw our weight behind their movement by even coming up with lofty resolutions that were meant to readily address their agitations”.
“It is regrettable, however, to learn that the peaceful protest was not only hijacked by unpatriotic elements who don’t mean well for the populace, but also brutally ended with the use of force that took place at Lekki Toll Gate on October 20th . The single incident has reportedly led to loss of lives and belongings, while some are also wounded”
He added that while I may not say much about the Lekki Toll Gate as investigation to the event is ongoing, its aftermath, however, which has brought about wanton destruction of both private and government property, enterprises, arson and looting all over the country, particularly in our dear state, is pathetic.
Hon. Abiodun Tobun representing Epe Constituency 1 in the assembly lamented that no parent came forward to complain, saying that though the incident was pathetic and prayed that God will not bring such occurrence to happen again, as he added that the perpetrators of the sad incident should be punished according to the law.
Hon. Mojeed Fatai, also sympathized with the victim of the incident, saying that we do not want such incidents in Lagos again.
Obasa, therefore set up a seven (7) man committee to investigate the matter and report back in three weeks’ time