• Friday, June 21, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

EndSARS protests: Buhari cautions youths against being used to truncate democracy

Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday cautioned Nigerian youths against being used by subversive elements to truncate the nation’s nascent democracy.

The President speaking in a national broadcast on the ongoing EndSARS Protests, who noted that the choice to demonstrate peacefully is a fundamental right of citizens as enshrined in Section 40 of Nigeria’s Constitution and other enactments, added that ” this right to protest also imposes on the demonstrators the responsibility to respect the rights of other citizens, and the necessity to operate within the law”

President Buhari reaffirmed the Federal Government’s commitment to preserving the unity of this country, and assured that government” will continue to improve good governance and our democratic process, including through sustained engagement.

“We shall continue to ensure that liberty and freedom, as well as the fundamental rights of all citizens are protected.

“But remember that government also has the obligation to protect lives and properties, as well as the right of citizens to go about their daily businesses freely and protected from acts of violence.

Buhari also while thanking the international community for their interests in the country, however, charged them to seek to know all the facts available before taking a position or rushing to judgment and making hasty pronouncements.

” In the circumstances, I would like to appeal to protesters to note and take advantage of the various well-thought-out initiatives of this administration designed to make their lives better and more meaningful, and resist the temptation of being used by some subversive elements to cause chaos with the aim of truncating our nascent democracy.

“For you to do otherwise will amount to undermining national security and the law and order situation. Under no circumstances will this be tolerated.

He therefore called on the youths to discontinue the street protests and constructively engage government in finding solutions.

“Your voice has been heard loud and clear and we are responding.

He also called on all Nigerians to go about their normal businesses, and enjoin security agencies to protect lives and properties of all law abiding citizens without doing harm to those they are meant to protect. Let me pay tribute to officers of the Nigeria Police Force who have tragically lost their lives in the line of duty.

Buhari commended the state Governors, traditional and religious leaders who have appealed for calm and restraint as well as youth leaders who have restrained their followers from taking the law into their hands.

” This government respects and will continue to respect all the democratic rights and civil liberties of the people, but it will not allow anybody or groups to disrupt the peace of our nation”