The former Governor of Lagos State and National Leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has said that the Federal Government must be given a chance to implement the police reforms demanded by #EndSARS protesters.
He also commended President Muhammadu Buhari for not only scrapping the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) unit but also accepting the protesters’ 5-point demand.
Tinubu disclosed this in the early hours of Tuesday morning via a tweet thread. This comes after the Lagos State Government inaugurated an 8-man Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution to investigate cases of police brutality in the state.
‘#ENDSARS PROTESTS – THE REMEDY FOR NATIONAL MALADIES IS MORE, NOT LESS, DEMOCRACY’
— Bola Ahmed Tinubu (@AsiwajuTinubu) October 19, 2020
Nairametrics had earlier reported that the National Leader of the APC had denied sponsoring the #EndSARS protests that have rocked the country in the last ten days. He reiterated that he could not have sponsored a protest that is affecting the economy of his state, Lagos.
“For the past twelve days, our country has witnessed massive protests by youths in different cities, which were ignited by widespread disenchantment with the gross human rights abuses including torture, extortion, harassment, intimidation, and even extra-judicial killings of Nigerians by members of the disbanded Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS),” Tinubu tweeted.
He added that the demand for police reforms aligned with Nigeria’s anthem in building a nation where peace and justice reigns.
“Justice, as one of our greatest writers, has memorably noted, is ‘the first condition of humanity’.
“A society where those who are paid from the public purse to protect the lives and property of the people become themselves threats to the liberty, safety, and dignity of the people; where human life is difficult to distinguish from the Thomas Hobbes ‘State of Nature – ‘solitary, poor, nasty and brutish’, is not one fit for free and decent people to live in. Such impunity and lawlessness are incompatible with the values and tenets of a democratic society governed by the supremacy of the rule of law.”
Tinubu said that a society that deals with challenges of injustice, corruption, and dictatorship will be forced to respond with resistance and struggle for emancipation.
“The result is the triumph of justice over injustice, liberty over tyranny, and right over wrong; thus, enabling the society to be elevated to a higher level of good, accountable, responsible, and responsive governance,”
He said that justice triumphing over injustice was the process that ended historical ills like colonialism, apartheid, tyranny, and misrule; and Nigeria’s current democracy was “borne of struggle in response to the challenge of military dictatorship.”
Tinubu also said that brutality caused by SARS was a challenge that the youth responded positively to, which became a catalyst for reforms. However, he urged the youth to give the Presidency time to implement the reforms as it couldn’t be done instantaneously.
“The impunity of SARS was thus a challenge that the youth have responded positively and courageously to and has triggered the commencement of the fundamental reform of the country’s policing system.
“The protesters must admit that the President Buhari administration has acted with commendable dispatch by not only scrapping SARS, but also accepting the five-point demand that triggered the protests. This shows a laudable sensitivity to the grievances of the youths.
“It is only fair that the government must be given the chance to implement the reforms demanded by the protesters. This can certainly not be done instantaneously by the waving of a magic wand,” he stated.
He commended religious leaders for their actions this period and appealed to call off the protests for peace to reign.
“Finally, I also strongly appeal to the protesters – you have made your point. The government has made its commitment to you. Please, please and please, call off the protests. Give the government a chance to implement your demands.”
#EndSARS: Insurance firms can seek refund after indemnifying victims – MD, NICON Insurance
NICON MD has stated that it is possible for the insurance firms to be compensated by the FG after victims have been indemnified.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NICON Insurance Limited, Mr. Muhammadu Bagudu Hussaini, has advised Insurance firms to maximize certain provisions in the constitution that guarantees their refund after compensating victims of the recent #EndSARS protest, opining that it is possible for the insurance firms to be compensated by the Federal Government of Nigeria.
He made the disclosure during an interview with the Daily Trust, where he decried the high level of losses encountered during the protest and the imminent high claims on insurance firms, which if care is not taken, might affect liquidity in the system.
Mr. Hussaini stated that the government has the machinery to pay the insurance companies without recourse to treasury, but he was quick to point out that it is a dormant machinery.
What they are saying
Elucidating his points, Mr. Hussaini said: “There will be a large volume of claims which the insurance industry would have to pay. I have no doubt about the capacity of the insurance industry to meet its obligations on claims that may arise from the destruction across the country.
“However, two issues would arise because the context of the claims are huge and would come in at the same time. There will be no spread, thus this will impact the finances of the underwriters and may destabilize their finances.
“What happened was as a result of breakdown of law and order. Section 14 (2b) of the Nigerian Constitution vests the duty of guaranteeing security and providing for the welfare of the citizens in the hands of government – the executive precisely. I will look at the damages from the protest as a failure of the government to provide security and welfare for the citizens.
“The section says the security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government. Thus, insurance companies have a subrogation right – the right to recover from the government their funds after they pay the claims arising from the destruction.
“Therefore, I advise the insurance companies to pay their claims and seek refund on the basis of Section 14 (2b) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
EndSARS protests: British parliament to sanction request against Nigeria on Monday
The British Parliament will consider a petition demanding the British government applies sanctions against the Nigerian Government for alleged human rights violations.
The British Parliament has disclosed that it will consider a petition by some groups and individuals, asking that it should apply sanctions against the Nigerian Government and officials for alleged human rights violations during the #EndSARS protest and Lekki shooting incident.
The parliament also claimed that the shooting of unarmed protesters at the Lekki Tollgate gave rise to the outbreak of violence and is waiting for the outcome of investigations by the federal and state governments into reports of police brutality and extra-judicial killings.
This disclosure was made by the parliament, in a response to a petition signed by over 220,118 individuals in the United Kingdom, requesting the UK Government to sanction Nigeria for alleged violations of human rights.
The response was signed by the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and obtained from the official website of the parliament – https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/554150.
The reply from the parliament partly reads, “The UK Government is deeply concerned by violence during recent protests in Nigeria, which tragically claimed lives. Our thoughts are with the families of all those affected.”
“Parliament will debate this petition on November 23, 2020. You will be able to watch online on the UK Parliament YouTube channel. On July 6, the British Government established the Global Human Rights sanctions regime by laying regulations in Parliament under the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018.
“The Foreign Secretary set out in full the scope of the UK’s new Global Human Rights sanctions regime. He announced the first tranche of designations, as well as the Government’s approach to future designations.
“This sanctions regime will give the UK a powerful new tool to hold to account those involved in serious human rights violations or abuses. The sanctions regime is not intended to target individual countries.
“It will allow for sanctions to be imposed on individuals and entities involved in serious human rights violations or abuses around the world.
“We will continue to consider potential designations under the Global Human Rights sanctions regime. It is a longstanding practice not to speculate on future sanctions designations as to do so could reduce the impact of the designations. The UK Government will keep all evidence and potential listings under close review,” the parliament said in its reply.
The response pointed out the different interventions that the British government had made as part of the efforts to draw the attention of the Federal Government to cases of human rights violation during the #EndSARS protest.
The parliament asked the British government to look at the possibility of imposing new sanctions that allow individuals and entities that violate human rights around the world to be targeted.
To impose sanctions on members of the Nigerian government and police force involved in any human rights abuses during the protests.
It said the Foreign Secretary issued a statement on October 21 calling for an end to the violence and for the Nigerian Government to urgently investigate reports of brutality by its security forces and hold those responsible to account.
It can be recalled that there were petitions against the Nigerian government and public officials by Nigerians at the UK parliament over human rights abuses during the #EndSARS protests.
They called for the implementation of sanctions that would allow individuals and entities that violate human rights to be targeted.
Lekki shooting: LCC video footage shows soldiers arriving in several trucks
Video footage played at the Lagos judicial panel of inquiry has shown the moment Nigerian Army trucks arrived at the Lekki Tollgate.
Video footage from the CCTV camera presented by the Lekki Concession Company (LCC) has shown that several trucks, which allegedly belonged to the Nigerian Army, were seen being deployed to the Lekki Tollgate area of Lagos State on October 20—the day of the shooting incident.
According to Channels Television, this was discovered during the resumed sitting on Saturday, November 21, 2020, of the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry set up to probe incidents of police brutality and extra-judicial killings, and the alleged shooting of #EndSARS protesters by the Nigerian army at the Lekki Tollgate.
The video footage showed that the location was calm until 6.43 pm when some people could be seen running towards the tollgate from the Oriental Hotel as a number of trucks were seen arriving at the Lekki toll gate with flashing headlights.
It also showed that 10 minutes after the arrival of the military vehicles, the lights at the tollgate went off, with one of the vehicles driving through the tollgate to the other side where the crowd of protesters was gathered.
However, after about three hours of watching the footage, the counsel to the #EndSARS protesters, Adeshina Ogunlana, who was earlier given access to the video complained that the footage was not the one that should have been played.
In his claims, he pointed out that a particular recording was omitted, explaining that he was given tapes tagged t1 and t1 full.
At the resumed sitting, Justice Doris Okuwobi (rtd), who is the Chairman of the judicial panel, said she was calling up the Lekki Toll company first so that the footage of the happenings around the Lekki Toll Gate would be watched by all parties, including the Nigerian Army.
It can be recalled that the setting up of the Judicial Panel of inquiry was a fallout of the protests by Nigerians against police brutality and extra-judicial killings, with the victims expected to get redress.
The panel was also mandated to unravel the circumstances surrounding the Lekki shooting incident and the reported deaths.
The Nigerian army, who initially denied its role in the incident, describing such reports as fake news, later came out to admit that officers had been deployed to the area on the invitation of the Lagos state government after a curfew had been imposed, due to the outbreak of violence and the destruction of public and private assets.