Nigeria’s former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, has identified with youths demanding outright disbandment of the Special Anti Robbery Squad of the Nigerian Police Force over extortion, brutality, extrajudicial killing of Nigerians by the unit.
This is coming as he also called on relevant security agencies to ensure adequate protection of protesters calling for reforms in the police unit across the country, saying exercising right through peaceful march was part of democratic norms.
Atiku, who was the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate during 2019 general election, said that peaceful protests as being undertaken by the youths are channel that unlock governments positive response across the globe by yielding to people’s demand when it comes to protection of lives and properties.
Through a series of post on his social media page on Friday, the former vice president condemned what he termed as disproportionate use of force on protesters across the nation.
According to him, the relevant authorities must ensure our youths are heard, and all incidents of excessive use of force by security agencies against protesters are investigated.
“I woke up to the peaceful EndSARS protests going on in Lagos and other cities in the country. First, I would like to commend the tenacity of our brave youths who have stayed out on the streets all day and night to make their voices heard. I stand with you all.
“Protests are an essential part of any democracy as we have seen the world over, and should be seen as an opportunity for dialogue between our people and our leaders. Thus, it is essential that the fundamental rights of Nigerians to freedom of assembly and freedom of expression must be protected at all costs,” the post read.