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Another #EndSARS Protests Will Worsen Poverty- Yahaya Bello Warns Youth

He appealed to the youth to consolidate on the gains of the previous protest by being actively involved in judicial panels set up by various states.

The Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello has said the country is not ready for another round of #EndSARS protest against police brutality.

Kogi governor said this in response to reports that some protesters have been seen returning to the street in some cities.

It should be recalled that there was a widespread protest against police brutality with the trending hashtag #EndSARS in October.

What was known as a peaceful protest led to breakdown or order after it was hijacked by hoodlums.

Speaking to the press on Sunday, Bello said another round of protests will have a negative effect on the nation.

He appealed to the youth to consolidate on the gains of the previous protest by being actively involved in judicial panels set up by various states.

“In the face of all this and as the first sitting governor who publicly upheld the rights of our youths to protest against police brutality, I cannot in all good conscience agree that the time is ripe for another round of #EndSARS protests,” he said.

“I deem another round of #EndSARS protests to be premature and counter-productive at this time. Apart from the higher likelihood of conflict with the police earlier canvassed, we must also admit that the security situation in the country is very precarious at the moment.

“All patriots must therefore make conscious efforts not to degrade a parlous security situation further. Nationwide protests at this time will only overburden the load-bearing capabilities of our security architecture increasing the likelihood of total collapse. No matter the narrative, I doubt that out-of-control anarchy is an objective of the #EndSARS protests.”

He admonished the youth to note that the nation’s economy is yet to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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“To worsen matters, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) predicted 3 days ago that the pandemic could push the number of people living in extreme poverty to over 1 billion by 2030. Thank God they are owning up to my earlier prediction, warning, and caution,” he said.

“Nigeria’s earning and foreign exchange situation is too fragile as we speak to resist sustained shocks.

“Another nationwide protest will worsen the multidimensional poverty indices all over our country and work greater hardship on the ordinary Nigerians we claim to be advocating for.”

The governor added that anger at “social imbalances or poor governance manifested only through protests, whether peaceful or violent, will only achieve piecemeal objectives”.

 

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