▪︎ Say public buildings should be guarded by armed security officers
A group of concerned Lagosians have frowned against the recent destruction of property at the Lagos High Court, Igbosere, and Igbosere Magistrates’ court, Lagos by hoodlums during the #EndSARS peaceful protests turned violent.
In a communique signed by Mr. Lawal Pedro, SAN and 35 other Lagosians in business and profession, the group called on government at all levels to protect sensitive public buildings from future destruction.
Mr. Pedro advised that sensitive public buildings like courts in Lagos and other places should henceforth be heavily guarded by armed security officers.
Pedro, a retired Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Justice, during the 3-hour virtual meeting, expressed sadness over what he termed desecration of the heritage of indigenes in their ancestral home, Lagos.
Apart from the wanton destruction of the Igbosere court premises, considered to be the oldest Nigeria’s judicial building, the concerned Lagosians also condemned the invasion of thugs at the palace of Oba of Lagos, Oba Riliwan Akiolu, noting that such bold violation of their heritage is unprecedented.
The sons of the soil also acknowledged that the EndSARS protest was hijacked by some subversive elements, stressing that destruction of businesses and properties is not part of the objectives of the genuine protesters.
According to Mr. Pedro, SAN, “We also condemn in strongest terms the subsequent destruction of public and private properties in Lagos State including the palace of the Oba of Lagos and Igbosere court premises by some hoodlums who were angered by the soldiers’ attack on the peaceful #ENDSARS protesters at Lekki Toll-gate.
“The destruction was not what the genuine protesters wanted or desired and we sympathize with those who have lost loved ones, properties, businesses and premises.”
Speaking further, Mr. Pedro said, “The aftermath of attack of #ENDSARS protesters at Lekki Toll-gate Eti-Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State on 20th October 2020, were but not limited to the following;
“i. Loss of lives of innocent peaceful protesters. ii. Destruction of public and private properties. iii. Destruction and desecration of the HERITAGE OF INDIGENES of Lagos such as the Palace of Oba of Lagos as never been witnessed or read in the history of Lagos.
“In view of the above, some concerned indigenes of Lagos State convened a virtual meeting today (25th day of October, 2020) from 6pm to 10pm and deliberated on the causes and impacts of the unpleasant event on the State, its inhabitants and Indigenes.
“At the end of the meeting, the following resolutions were made, and it was unanimously resolved, to come up with this Communiqué,'” he added.
The former Permanent Secretary, Lagos State Ministry of Justice said the #ENDSARS protest at the Lekki Toll-gate was the most peaceful and well organised protest ever in the history of Lagos State and Nigeria in general.
“Therefore, the invitation of armed security/military officers to attack the unarmed peaceful protesters at the Lekki Toll-gate which led to loss of lives and injuries to protesters is condemnable and unacceptable.
“The Government should therefore bring those responsible to book,” he added.
The concerned indigenes also alerted other Lagos indigenes to take roles in government to protect the sanctity and heritage of their ancestral home, warning that most politicians in Lagos are non-indigenes who would take to their heels when Lagos runs into unbearable trouble.