By Daniel Tyoku
Following the turn of event in the past few days leading to the killing of many young Nigerians and the destruction of property worth millions of naira, the Crime Correspondents Association of Nigeria (CCAN), has appealed to the #EndSARS protesters to suspend the protest for now.
It has, therefore, charged the Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies to handle the #EndSARS protests across the country with caution and professionalism.
In a statement in Abuja on Wednesday, the Chairman of CCAN, Hassan Zaggi, said the appeal was necessary considering that the protest which was peaceful has now turned bloody.
He regretted that the #EndSARS protest which has since been hijacked by hoodlums and criminals.
Mr. Zaggi, however, advised the #EndSARS protesters to suspend the protest for now, so that enemies of the country will not take advantage of the situation and cause unimaginable crisis in the country.
“The Crime Correspondent Association of Nigeria (CCAN), has expressed concern over the manner and way the #EndSARS protest that began as a peaceful protest has, in the past few days, become violent and bloody.
“We are deeply concern because the lives of young, energetic and promising Nigerians are being wasted unnecessarily.
“The ugly incidents of gruesome killings and maiming of Nigerians in the Abuja city centre, Dutse Alhaji, a surbub in the FCT, Lagos and other parts of the country is worrisome.
“We, have, even seen in some cases, innocent police officers were molested and beaten, leaving them with severe injuries.
“We are also worried because properties worth millions of naira of innocent Nigerians who have nothing to do with the protest have been destroyed and burnt down,” he said.
The CCAN Chairman lamented that: “As Crime Correspondents who are at the forefront of monitoring the protests, this, indeed, is not what we expected.
“We suspect that the peaceful protest has since been hijacked from the #EndSARS protesters, hence, the need for the government to intervene.”
The statement applauded the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, for the steps taken so far in an effort to manage the situation, and called for more discreet and professional handling of the recent turn of events.
“CCAN also calls on other security agencies to be professional in handing the situation so as to ensure that none of our youth is killed while exercising his right to peaceful protest.
“However, we call on the Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies to trigger their investigative skills to identify those who take advantage of the peaceful protest to kill and destroy properties of innocent Nigerians,” he said.
According to Mr. Zaggi: “Our findings from the protesters across the country indicated that the issues around the #EndSARS protest are multifaceted, hence, are beyond the Nigeria Police Force.
“CCAN, therefore, calls on the President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government to respond quickly to issues raised by the protesters in order to persuade them to keep calm.
“We also call on the #EndSARS protesters to take a break, in order to save the country from slipping into an unimaginable crisis.
“Our advice is premised on the fact that the peaceful protest has been infiltrated by hoodlums and criminals in different parts of the country and we suspect that it may get worse in the coming days if the #EndSARS protesters continue.”