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#EndSARS #SARSMUSTEND #SarsMustGo – Why?

Uwem Jnr (ANE Staff)



These past days, you’ve definitely heard or seen some news concerning the #EndSARS and #SARSMUSTEND protest in Nigeria.
There’s also a possibility that the news you’ve heard isn’t the truth as most National media outlets in Nigeria are twisting the truth and hiding it from the world, but the world is watching. Let me help you understand this better…

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SARS is a section in the Nigerian Police Force which was created a few years ago to fight crime and robbery in the country in order to safe-guard and protect lives and properties, but on the contrary, SARS has rather become an ‘Authorized Terrorist Group’ in the country. Why? They go about extorting youths, harassing them, checking their phones, seizing these phones, smashing it all in the name of tagging them ‘Yahoo boys’ -who are cybercrime fraudsters. Not only that, they harass any youth they come across, physically and verbally abuse them, beat them up as if these youths were thieves. Let’s take this deeper.

As a Nigerian youth, dressing up in order to look good for an outing is a crime. Why? SARS will definitely harass you, ask where you got the money from, check your phones and laptops, seize them, destroy them and ask you to pay a fine before they let you go. Yes! They either take you to the nearest ATM outlet or use their POS to withdraw large amounts of money from you. It would’ve been maybe better if it ended there, but NO! They beat up youths, detain them and sometimes kill them in the spot or detain them and release them with a heavily charged bail fee, but most likely, you’d get killed because they disarm you of phones you could use to reach out to anyone for help. These supposedly ‘Anti-Robbery Squad’ molest, assault, rape and kill young girls and women. That isn’t all…

Their job was to fight crime, but they label every young person with an iPhone and laptop who is possibly a content creator, creative or developer a CRIMINAL. They label every young and upcoming music artist a CULTIST. Every young guy with dreads, tattoo, rings, gadgets, cars- preferably Mercedes-Benz- is being labelled a THIEF. Sometimes, whether you’re Nigerian or not, it’s your first time in the country or not, as long as you look good, have gadgets on you or worse still, drive a car, you’re labelled as a CRIMINAL and most times when detained, they charge you for fraud, kidnapping, murder and all the crimes they can think of. The police brutality is just too much to be silent about anymore.

What has the government said or done about this? Let’s see…

In 2017, they said they’d REFORM the SARS unit, but that was a lie. In 2018, they said they’d REORGANIZE the unit too, but they still lied. In 2019, they said they’d DISBAND them, but that was yet another lie. A video leaked on the internet few days after Nigeria celebrated her 60th independence- and in it, an old man whose son was murdered by the SARS officials cried, prayed and cursed those who killed his son and tagged him a criminal- when he’d done nothing. This is what led to the ongoing #EndSARS protest by the Nigerian youths.

The #EndSARS protest is simply a peaceful protest by the Nigerian youths who just need the freedom to live! There’s no freedom of movement, speech, nothing… We’re not fighting for the light we don’t have, water, unemployment, just our right to LIFE, but this is the 6th day and rather than listening to the youths, the peaceful protest has become a war zone. Let me break this further…

The protest which began in Lagos on Thursday was soon joined by the Nigerian youths who are home and in diaspora. Peaceful protests has been ongoing for days now from the 8th of October, 2020- with youths asking for the SARS unit to be scrapped out completely as a result of their hideous and evil activities. It has been a peaceful protest, but from Friday, the 9th of October, the SARS officers started using tear gas, hot water and opened live rounds on unarmed, peaceful protesters. There’s been constant killings since then in the country. They’ve arrested, detained, kidnapped, assaulted and killed peaceful Nigerian citizens who for some weren’t even part of the protesters. This isn’t all…

On Sunday, the 11th of October, the Inspector General of Police announced the dissolution of the SARS unit, but few minutes after that, the SARS officials who were on duty and not supposed to be on duty, opened fire on the peaceful protesters in Abuja, injuring and killing some. Worse still, the #EndSARS which has been trending No.1 in the world was hijacked and shadowed, leading to the use of the new #SARSMUSTEND which is currently trending No.1 in the world too. The Nigerian media outlets have been paid to report fake and controversial news concerning this ongoing protest, but CNN Africa and CNN International, Al Jazeera, BBC and a few other media outlets have captured the whole truth about this story. For more information, please search the #EndSARS or #SARSMUSTEND on Twitter.

Yesterday, the 12th of October, after series of death tolls and injuries and increased harassment from SARS, the Nigerian President- Buhari announced the disbandment of SARS, but again, that was just news as more people were killed after that. The Nigerian youths are angry. There’s been protests so far in Toronto – Canada, London, Belgium, Texas and a few other countries, but massively in almost all states in Nigeria including Lagos, FCT- Abuja, Kwara- Ilorin, Plateau- Jos, Kogi- Lokoja, Cross River- Calabar, Akwa Ibom- Uyo, Abeokuta- Ogun, Oyo- Ibadan, Anambra- Awka, Edo- Benin and a lot of other states in Nigeria. Some brands have partnered with Nigerian youths to bring an end to this madness.

A lot of Nigerians in Lagos couldn’t go to work yesterday, some went, but joined the protest too. Some companies have declared this week free for their youths to join the protest and fight for their rights, whilst some others have only decided to feign incredulity to the happenings in the country. More annoyingly, the UN and other bodies who are supposed to step into this matter have blatantly refused to do so till it becomes a civil war. Celebrities have lended their voices to amplify the protest and some outstanding Nigerian women have also been great heroes to this cause. Names like Savvy Rinu, Aisha Yesufu, WizKid, Davido, Debo Maccarroni and many others wi never be forgotten for helping in amplifying the voices of our fight for freedom to live.

I am saddened, angry, in pain, in tears, terrified if I’ll be the next to be assaulted or my friend will be kidnapped or someone I know will be detained. All Nigerian youths live in fear and all we’re asking for is #EndSARS #SARSMUSTEND is this too much to ask for? There will be a Nationwide protest today Tuesday the 13th of October, 2020 and we still hope the Government we voted for will not be deaf anymore to our demands.

For every life that has been lost in this peaceful protest, there shall be vengeance and justice will prevail insha Allah. For every Nigerian who is fighting for this cause too- our mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, friends, may they be protected in Jesus name.

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