Protesters have stormed the roads and headquarters of the police force across Nigeria to demand the dissolution of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS Unit of the Police Force.
The protests, which began yesterday, have been taking place in Lagos, Edo, and began in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja today.
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In Abuja, the #EndSARS protesters who bore placards with different inscriptions such as #EndSARS, #EndPoliceBrutality and ‘STOPKillingUs!’ sat on the Shehu Shagari Way, chanting ‘EndSARS,’ and impeding the movement of vehicles.
The protesters also poured red paint on the road to signify the bloodshed and killings perpetrated by SARS operatives, many of whom have been indicted for rights violations, including extra-judicial killings, extortion, illegal detention and other misconduct.
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Meanwhile, in Lagos, popular musicians, Folarin Falana, who is popularly known as Falz, and Runtown, led the #EndSARS protest which took place in the Lekki area of Lagos today.
During the protest, youths were seen carrying placards which read, ‘Enough is Enough’ and ‘We are all victims’, and chanting #EndSARS.
Before the protest commenced, Falz and Runtown reportedly counselled the protesters not to be violent as they engaged security operatives who attempted to disrupt the protest. This was even as police had reportedly dispersed some protesters who arrived at the location of the protest, Lekki toll gate opposite Oriental Hotel, around 09.15 am.
It was also gathered that while dispersing the protesters, the policemen seized their placards and allegedly assaulted some of them.
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In an Instagram live chat before the protest, Falz, who is also the son of popular lawyer and human rights activist, Femi Falana, said, “No backing down. We move. The police are already there, waiting for us but we are not here to cause trouble. It is a peaceful protest. Coming through.”
The protesters, who gathered at Lekki toll gate, are marching to Onikan and Appeal Court through the Nigerian Law School, Lagos.
It had been announced last week that the #ENDSARS protest would be held across Lagos for three days, starting from Wednesday. The protests are expected to last till Friday.
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In Benin City, Edo State, protesters also stormed the streets to express their displeasure with the activities of SARS operatives. The protesters also carried posters, banners and placards on which different messages showing their grievances were written. The inscriptions included #EndSARS, #EndSARSPermanently, “SARS Ban is a scam, WE ARE STILL BEING HARASSED”, and “END SARS BRUTALITY NOW”.
The protesters who converged at the Kingsquare Ringroad are marching from there through NUJ to the Police Headquarters and then the Government House.
The #EndSARS protests are reportedly also taking place in other cities such as Owerri, Osogbo and Ibadan at the moment.