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#EndSARS protests: Southern Nigeria boils as hoodlums go on rampage

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…Kill protesters, policemen, set ablaze Police stations, prisons, courts
…Loot Malls, banks, shops, warehouses

By Dennis Agbo, Enugu;  Ibrahim HassanWuyo, Kaduna;  Abdulmumin Murtala, Kano;  Jimitota Onoyume, Delta;  Ozioruva Aliu, Edo;  Marie-Therese Nanlong, Plateau;  Dayo Johnson,  Akure; Shina Abubakar,  Osogbo; Ola Ajayi, Ibadan; Vincent Ujumadu, Awka; Rotimi Ojomoyela, Ekiti; Samuel Oyadongha, Bayelsa; Chioma Onuegbu, Uyo; Ndahi Marama, Maiduguri;  Demola Akinyemi, Kwara; James Ogunnaike, Ogun; Chidi Nkwopara, Owerri; Chinonso Alozie; Peter Duru, Makurdi; Egufe Yafugborhi, Rivers; Luminous Jannamike, Abuja

The protests by the youths against police brutality started on a peaceful note about two weeks ago and gained international attention.

The government acceded to their five-points demand and immediately set machinery in motion towards achieving them. But the youths continued their protest and soon increased their demands while turning the protest into a carnival of sort with celebrities adding flavour to it, singing and dancing.

Few days into the protest, miscreants sponsored by vested interests attacked the protesters in a bid to break the protest which further fueled the protesters’ resolve to continue with the protest.

However, hoodlums eventually hijacked the protest, extorting the residents, which culminated into killing, maiming, looting and destruction of property across the country.

Police brutality that fueled the #EndSARS protests was glaring in the southern Nigeria.

The cases of extrajudicial killings, maiming and extortion were more pronounced in the south. Unfortunately hoodlums from the same areas unleashed mayhem on their people in the past few days, killing and destroying public utilities serving mostly the masses. In Lagos, mass transit buses serving the masses were set ablaze in different terminals, public building were burnt, some banks were not spared. Looting and destruction became the order of the day for two days.

Even a truck transporting goats was attacked and goats looted. Police appeared overwhelmed as their stations and officers were attacked. The carnage in Lagos was unbelievable(see special report on Lagos). Violence was reported in Kano and Jos. In Abuja, cars belonging to auto dealers were set ablaze before Tuesday, the day suspected military men opened fire at Lekki Toll Gate where protesters were having their peaceful session. in Kano This triggered the mayhem that followed. Hoodlums also had a field day in many southern states, the same people who bore the brunt of police brutality. Below are reports of what happened in some Nigerian cities.

Enugu

The #EndSARS protest started peacefully in Enugu with celebrities such as Flavour, Phyno, Zoro and others adding colour to the protest that also featured native musicians. By Wednesday October 21 the peaceful protest however turned violent as hoodlums hijacked it. Before, midday the roads were blocked while parents had hectic time fetching their wards from schools.

By noon, no less than two protesters were reportedly killed along Nike Lake road. Police also used armoured tanks on the surging crowd. Enugu North Local Government Secretariat was torched and the council hall looted. Bonfires were all over town while the state government imposed 24 hours curfew in the state capital.

On Thursday the curfew was ignored and it got worse with killing of no less than three persons, looting of banks, shops and vandalisation of Public utilities. The Enugu Adoration ground of Rev Fr Ejike Mbaka was rumoured to have been burnt but this was discovered to be false.

Ebonyi

In Ebonyi state, no less than four police stations were razed. Two were in Abakaliki metropolis while two were in Governor Dave Umahi’s village and nearby Okposi. Attempt was also made to free prisoners in Abakaliki Correctional Center but it failed. Governor Umahi then imposed curfew which was not complied with. Umahi however expressed readiness to identify with the protesters but regretted that the protest was hijacked by hoodlums who according to him invaded Ebonyi from other neighbouring states and threatened to deal ruthlessly with alleged hoodlums, if they did not vacate the state.

Kaduna

The protest in Kaduna was two fold. While youths were earlier mobilized for the EndSARS protests apparently in solidarity with their counterparts in the southern parts of the country since the alleged excesses of SARS were not deeply felt in the north, another group emerged championing the #EndInsecurityNow protest. However, many dwellers condemned the protests saying that some politicians who were not comfortable with the current political arrangement were the sponsors. They argued that wherever the protesters converged, they were served with meals and assorted drinks,no matter their number, contrary to what obtained in the past when only sachet water and groundnuts were served “genuine protesters.”

#SecureNorth protesters who took to the streets of Kaduna Tuesday afternoon said they were on a peaceful protest against insecurity bedeviling the northern region and the entire Nigeria and demanding the safety of the citizenry. They marched to the Government House, Kaduna to submit their request to Governor Nasir El-Rufai for onward transmission to President Muhammadu Buhari, promising that, government failure to respond to their demands would lead to a bigger protest.

Earlier in the week,youths in Kaduna had joined their counterparts in other parts of Nigeria to demand an end to what they called “bad governance” (#ENDSARS). Their protests had caused traffic gridlock in some parts of the state capital but it remained peaceful.

Kano

The protest in Kano turned violent, as suspected hoodlums hijacked it and unleashed terror. Violence broke out at the Sabongari area, dominated by non-indigenes following the #EndSars protest by youth groups on Tuesday.

Eyewitness account said no fewer than two women were reportedly killed at Chicken Republic eatery after suspected hoodlums ransacked the place. According to the eyewitnesses, some armed thugs infiltrated genuine protesters and started attacking innocent people and in the process, more than 15 vehicles were burnt down while some buildings were also vandalized.

At Sarkin Yaki road at the same Sabongari quarters, Galaxy Mall was vandalized by suspected hoodlums, who looted some of the items in the building. A hotel, Summit Lodge, located along Hausa road at the Sabongari area was also burnt down by the suspected hoodlums.

Reacting to the incident, the state Commissioner of Police, Habu Sani, confirmed the violence, saying that the Command had not officially received the report that two women were killed in the incident.

He however confirmed that seven motor vehicles were burnt down, while eight were damaged, as two motorbikes were also set on fire. The Police Commissioner also confirmed that a lodge was also vandalised at Hausa Road and that five persons sustained injuries.

Delta

The EndSARS protest was held in several parts of Delta state with two persons confirmed dead and several others injured. One of the dead was a policeman at Ughelli, and his rifle was said to be missing but later recovered after some days. The other was a young boy who was allegedly crushed by a truck on top speed in Sapele local government area . Eight persons sustained injuries during the protest in Sapele. The protesters also attempted to break into the Warri Correctional Centre on Okere road to set the inmates free but were repelled by security operatives.

Inmates of the centre still set some buildings inside on fire apparently to create confusion for escape. The Police Public relations officer, DSP Onome Onovwakpoyeya, at the time of this report, said there was no confirmed case of any escape of inmates at the centre.

In Warri, the protesters occupied the Effurun and DSC roundabout in Uvwie local government area since last Sunday. The DSC and Effurun roundabouts are strategic in the oil rich city as they connect the city with other parts of the country. Vehicles coming from Cross river, Rivers, Bayelsa going to Lagos will first get to the DSC roundabout and then the Effurun roundabout before heading to Benin city and Lagos. The protesters numbering over two hundred danced to latest hit tracks supplied by disk jockeys they hired. They had banners denouncing SARS, calling for Police reform and several other failures of governance.

The protest also held simultaneously in Warri South and Uvwie Local Government Areas and extended to Osubi in Okpe Local Government Area, Eku, Abraka junctions on the Eku-Agbor express roads for days. Similar protest held at Oghara, Jesse end of the Sapele –Benin express road in Ethiope West local government area. There reported destruction and killings in Asaba, resulting in the curfew imposed by the governor.

Edo

The protest in Edo state which started on October 8th assumed a violent dimension that has led to loss of lives and property worth millions of naira destroyed, police stations razed, arms carted away and inmates released from the two correctional centres in Benin City; the Benin Medium Correctional Centre popularly called White House along Sapele Road and Oko Medium Security Correctional Centre.

The protest had initially been peaceful and restricted mainly to the Main Gate of the University of Benin along the Benin- Lagos highway with the protesters always in a carnival like mood dancing to revolutionary music of Fela Kuti, his son Femi Kuti, Idris Abdulakreem, African China and several others and creating heavy gridlock from dawn till dusk when they closed for the day and to converge the next day.

But signs that the protest may assume a violent dimension started on Sunday morning along Ekheuan Road when church worshipers became stranded as suspected hoodlums barricaded the stretch of the road from Erediauwa Junction to Asoro Hills and later in the day, the entire stretch of road from the Auchi-Benin road by the Eyaen axis of the by-pass was blocked all the way to Aduwawa with only some commercial drivers chanting ‘Buhari must go’ driving dangerously through the road.

By Monday, the EndSARS protest became violent as the two prisons were ransacked and almost two thousand inmates released by the suspected hoodlums. Oba Market Police Station and Ivgbuyokho police station were sacked and those in their detention facilities released with arms and ammunition stolen. It was worse in Ugbekun, Idogbo and St Saviour as these stations were sacked and razed down by the hoodlums.

Investigations have shown that most of the actors in this violence were not part of EndSARS demonstrations. Some of them displayed uncommon boldness wearing the uniform of police officers carted from these stations while some publicly brandished the weapons taken from the stations.

There was virtually no single road in the state capital that was not barricaded and blocked with bonfires on Monday morning with some of the hoodlums publicly smoking cannabis and other substances.

Plateau

The #EndSars protest in Plateau State was not spontaneous as options had to be weighed due to the fragile nature of peace in the State. Having mapped out the strategies, the protesters on the first day occupied the Old Airport and Zaramaganda junction as well as Polo roundabout displaying placards and chanting solidarity songs but causing traffic jam in the neighbourhoods.

The protest continued peacefully even as the state governor, Simon Lalong approved the appointment and inaugurated a seven-member Judicial Panel of Inquiry headed by retired Justice Philomena Lot to “investigate complaints of police brutality and related extra judicial killings in the State with a view to delivering justice for all victims of the dissolved Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) and other police units.”

However, what started as a peaceful protest on Tuesday morning assumed a religious dimension shortly before noon as hoodlums hijacked the process, burning cars and places of worship, looting shops, killing and maiming people around the Ahmadu Bello Way, Terminus, Barrack road, Old Bukuru Park areas of Jos North as well as the Gero junction/Bukuru expressway, Kungiya market and other areas in Jos South local government area.

Offices and other business premises were hurriedly closed as residents scampered for safety even as young boys who may as well be in their teens moved in groups attacking and injuring passersby, vandalizing cars, looting shops and hauling dangerous weapons on people who were trying to escape the melee.

The Jos/Bukuru metropolis was deserted as residents found their way home and following the breakdown of law and order, Governor Lalong imposed a 24-hour curfew with effect from 8pm of that day even as the Governor ordered all public and private businesses to shutdown activities immediately while parents are to rein in their children to forestall further breach of peace.

Ondo

The #EndSARS protest across Ondo state was hijacked by hoodlums as they went on rampage in the last one week shooting no fewer than five persons. About 60 inmates at the National Correctional Centre in Okitipupa, Ondo state were forcefully released by over a thousand hoodlums who broke into the centre and set the cells ablaze.

READ ALSO: #EndSARS protests: Violence continues as Buhari sues for peace

The hoodlums also set police stations, buildings, offices, local government secretariats and private residence ablaze. The thugs also set ablaze the state Secretariats of both the APC and PDP within three hours interval. Both parties traded blames. In all, eight police divisions in different towns, the Police Officers Mess in Akure and the campaign office of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu have been torched by the hoodlums.

In Okitipupa, two Police Divisions were razed, two Divisions were burnt in Akure while others were razed in Ondo town and Ore in Odigbo Local Government Area. Also, the private residence of a governorship aspirant under the APC , Ife Oyedele was set ablaze in Okitipupa.

Osun

As protesters continued to defy the curfew imposed by Osun state government in Osogbo and other parts of the state, hoodlums took to major streets, barricading inner roads in some communities and extorting residents.

Similarly, traders in some parts the state grumbled against the curfew, arguing that there was no need for it since there was no violence like that of Lagos in the state, hence many displayed their wares against government directive.

While two young men, identified as Mutiu and Olamilekan were said to have died from the violence that erupted last week Saturday in Osogbo after hoodlums attacked Governor Adegboyega Oyetola while addressing the #EndSARS Protesters, military personnel were deployed to keep vigil and prevent further violence from breaking out in the state.

Protesters in the state had been moving round major streets in Osogbo and other major towns like Ilesa, Ife, Ilobu among others blocking major express roads to vent their grievances against police brutality and bad governance in the country. However, while the peaceful protesters were moving round, hoodlums and cultists were infiltrating them.

Meanwhile, despite the curfew in the State, some hoodlums thronged the streets across towns blocking roads and, in some cases extorting motorists, while a truck was set ablaze at Owo-eba area for allegedly crushing the legs of one of the youths who fell off the truck. Some of the areas where extortion was witnessed include Biket, Ota-Efun, Awosuru, Oja-Oba, Ayepe in the state capital.

Oyo

Despite pleas by Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State to #EndSARS protesters to eschew violence and destruction of property, the irate youths further displayed their grievances by visiting police stations in the state that are notorious for brutality and extra judicial killings.

Vanguard gathered that some of those who had fallen victims to police brutality led their colleagues to attack the police stations and even killed the targeted policemen. The police stations attacked so far in the state were in Ojoo, Iwo road, and Iseyin areas of the state.

At Iwo road, two policemen were killed and burnt to ashes for allegedly killing a motorcyclist.

The killing of the two policemen brings the number of casualties so far to nine in the state.

Two persons were killed at Iwo road, four in Ogbomoso, one at Iwo road. Also, the palace of Soun of Ogbomoso, Oba Jimoh Oyewumi Ajagungbade was vandalized

Anambra

Protesters of #EndSARS took over the major streets in Anambra state after scaring people to abandon their business and scamper to safety. The youths later set up bonfires on the major streets, thereby making it impossible for motorists to ply the roads. Those traveling beyond Awka from Enugu and the northern states were forced to turn back. Governor Willie Obiano later made a broadcast announcing a 24 -hour curfew across the state.

All schools and markets were also closed and as the youths drove dangerously around the cities, parents rushed to the schools to pick their children before the official closing time.

In the commercial town of Nnewi, the Divisional Police Station was razed by the protesters and two people were feared dead. The popular Nkwo Nnewi market was also shut even before Governor Obiano made a statewide broadcast to announce a curfew in the state.

Obiano, who visited the dreaded Awkuzu SARS office during which he also announced the release of the detainees, said the state government has budgeted N200 million to assist the victims of SARS brutality. A panel has already been set up by the governor to identify victims of SARS brutality in the state.

In Onitsha, the protesters mounted what looked like a deity at the Anambra end of the Niger Bridge and this scared those coming into Anambra State, many of who had to turn back to Asaba in Delta State.

The state House of Assembly had to conduct its plenary via zoom, apparently out of fear of attack from the protesters.

Ekiti

But for the quick response of Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, the EndSARS protest in Ekiti State would have degenerated into violence where lives and property would have been lost.

The protest against police brutality by the youth of Ekiti started on a peaceful note last week Thursday and signs that it might degenerate into violence, started manifesting immediately after their counterparts in Lagos were violently dispersed by armed soldiers at Lekki Toll gate. Unhappy at the incidents, Ekiti youths took to the streets, erected barricades and bonfires on highways and strategic streets in all the major towns of the state, including Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.

This put the entire state in a lockdown, as all the major highways were blocked and traffic had to drag for several hours, commercial activities were paralysed, banks and markets closed shops, schools were shut down and palpable anger hung in the air.

Sensing the danger ahead, Governor Fayemi moved swiftly, invited the soldiers, closed schools and imposed a 24 hour curfew. He also set up a 10-man judicial committee to investigate allegations of abuse of power against the disbanded SARS in the state. This therefore doused the tensed atmosphere and returned the state to normalcy.

Bayelsa

THE protest against police brutality exemplified by the hashtags #EndSARS and #EndSWAT has been generally peaceful in Bayelsa State. Unlike in other states where the protest was hijacked by hoodlums leading to attack on police formations and other national assets the conduct of the youths in the predominantly riverine state which at a point in history was referred to as the hotbed of youth restiveness has been exemplary.

From the day of the candlelight night to reverence the souls of the departed victims of police brutality to street procession, the protesters never went out of their way to harass other citizens, instead they turned the exercise to a sort of carnival on the streets of Yenagoa, the state capital to highlight their grievances.

Comrade Mathew Ayibakuro, who spoke on behalf of the protesters, called on the state governor, Senator Douye Diri to set up a judicial panel of inquiry to look into cases of police brutality in the state with representatives of the youths and civil society organisations as well as establishment of a Bayelsa State security and human rights committee, a victim compensation fund, the reform and adequate funding of the police among other demands.

Akwa Ibom

The #EndSARS protest in Akwa Ibom State has been peaceful and violence free since its commencement in the state last Tuesday. The protest only witnessed bickering between the protesting youths and the organisers over the N4m largesse doled out to them by the state governor at the commencement of the protest in the state. The protesters usually gathered at the popular Ibom Plaza every day before taking to the streets, and returned to the same venue after a walk around major streets of Uyo, the state capital.

However, most banks, especially those located along major streets of Uyo stopped attending to customers as from 3 pm for fear of the unknown. Also there had been tight security around the Government House area since the commencement of the youth protest in the state.

Borno

Unlike other states in the country, especially in the southern part, protesters in Borno state were actually condemning the disbandment of SARS.

On the 13th of this month, thousands of pro-Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) embarked on peaceful protest in Maiduguri, urging government to revert its decision to disband the police unit. The protesters who stormed Government House Maiduguri comprised mostly youths, some Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and trade unions to put pressure on the federal government to reverse its decision.

Kwara

Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq on Thursday walked along with hundreds of #EndSARS protesters to the police headquarters in Ilorin, the state capital, some kilometers away ,urging them to remain calm and peaceful while their grievances were being addressed.

He announced the setting up of an ombudsman through which people could channel their grievances and have same attended to in the state. He said the ombudsman would be the go-between for aggrieved citizens and security agencies.

Kwara State Police Commissioner Kayode Egbetokun, who also addressed the protesters, commended them for being peaceful and said specific officers mentioned by the protesters would be investigated.

Suspected cultists however infiltrated  the protesters last Sunday at Post office area  disrupting the ongoing  peaceful protest.

Saturday Vanguard gathered that among the protesters were rival cultists who took up arms with the aggressor and since then attack and counter attack had been going on

No fewer than four suspected cultists have been killed in the reprisals attacks.

Ogun

Youths in Ogun State were no left behind in the ongoing #EndSARS protest in some parts of the  country, which was an agitation to end police brutality.

During the protest, which took place in major town across the country, business activities and vehicular movement were paralyzed.

Some celebrities, including Kizz Daniel, Odunlade Adekola, BolajiAmusan aka Mr. Latin, Yemi Sodimu were on hand to lend their support to the agitation of the protesters.

Two police stations, Police Post at Imoru, in Odogbolu local government area was vandalised, while just last Wednesday, the Divisional Police headquarters in Atan Ota, in Ado Odo/Ota local government area of the State was set ablaze. This was as a result of the alleged killing of a youth by the Police.

The station’s DCO, Augustine Ogbeche was killed in the process. It was gathered that the DPO was beaten to stupor. The TRACE office in Atan Ota was also vandalised.

Also, during the unrest, the official vehicle of the State Deputy Governor, Engr. Noimot Salako-Oyedele was vandalised where it was parked at a public function.

In Ijebu Ode, the protest was turned to carnival A cow was killed, roasted and served

Imo

6 police stations burnt, 2 police, Army killed in Imo

  • Many Local government headquarters set ablaze

Over six police stations have been burnt in Imo state, just as two police officers as well as Army officers were also killed in the violent attacks by hoodlums in and around the state.

The Imo state commissioner of Police, Isaac Akinmoyede, disclosed this at the police headquarters in Owerri, while explaining the attacks by hoodlums in the state in the name of EndSARs protests.

“So far, six police stations have been burnt, two police officers have been killed and two Army officers were also killed. Also some local government areas have been burnt,” Police commissioner said.

He added that the curfew imposed in the state was targeted at stopping the ongoing attacks by hoodlums on public institutions.

Vanguard gathered so far that the number of places where the police stations were burnt included Umuneke police station in Ngor Okpala local government, Anara police station in Isiala Mbano local government, Enyiogugu police division in Aboh Mbaise local government area.

Nworieubi police station in Mbaitoli local government area, Orji Divisional police station in Owerri North local government area as well as Njaba local government area.

As of the time of filling this report, some of the local government headquarters burnt were Orlu, Isiala Mbano, Ehime Mbano.

Benue

Benue state was not spared in the End SARS protests in the country. Between October 17 and 19 thousands of youths and protesters grounded activities in Makurdi the Benue state capital.

The protesters who were largely orderly and peaceful, marched throw major roads in the town singing solidarity songs and bearing placard and banners with inspirations such as “Give us back our country”, “Restructure Nigeria”, “Reform the the Police”, Lazy youths are tired”, “End herdsmen killings”, “End hardship and unemployment”, “Sack Service Chiefs” among others.

The youths on Monday October 19 stormed the Benue State Government House roundabout, obstructing all vehicular and pedestrian movements, demanding for Governor Samuel Ortom to address them.

The Governor who yielded to their demand commended them for being peaceful in their agitation assuring that he was in support of their action adding, “it is your right to make sure that everything is moving in the right direction because if we, the leaders don’t get it right it is you the youths that will suffer more.

“So I want to assure you that you have done the right thing and I the Governor of Benue state supports you in the protest and to say that for me I have also stood for the truth and I have never withheld my voice when it comes to issues of bad governance, insecurity and unemployment and others.

Rivers

Hoodlums cause deaths, arson

#ENDSARS protests peaceful and seemingly under control in Rivers state until hell was let loose October 21 when hoodlums hijacked the exercise and vented rage against police formations in different parts of the state.

By the time the dust settled that day, Oyigbo Area Command, Oyigbo and Afam Police Stations, both in Oyigbo Local Government Area (LGA) have been razed along with about fifteen vehicles including one Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) among four police stations targeted. A court was also torched in Oyigbo.

Rivers State Commissioner of Police (CP) Joseph Mukan had accused proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) as the masterminds who carried out Wednesday’s offensive against police in guise of #ENDSARS protesters.

Mukan said, “Two Police Officers were killed and some arms and ammunition carted away by the hoodlums. In another attack at the Mile 1 Police Station, same rampaging IPOB members under guise of #ENDSARS Protests made frantic attempt at burning the Police Station and office of Eagle Crack Squad.

“They were however repelled by superior fire power of the Police, as three of them were fatally wounded in the exchange of gunfire, while eight (8) of them were arrested and immediately transferred to the State CID where they are currently helping in our investigation.”

Community sources however strongly believe a number of civilians were killed, including unsuspecting residents caught by stray bullets, in the police, army support’s gun duel with hoodlums who attempted invading the Mile1 Station.

Worried by the development, Governor Nyesom Wike Wednesday night, imposed curfew on entire Oyigbo LGA which men of the Nigeria army have also occupied following unconfirmed attack on a team of army personnel. The 24 Curfew is also imposed in parts of Port Harcourt City LGA that experienced Wednesday’s violence.

Abuja

Clashes, Wanton Destruction, Deaths In Abuja

The #EndSARS protesters in Abuja had decided on October 18, 2020 to set up their camps outside the headquarters of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

“The intention was to block the bank’s staff from accessing their offices until their demands were met.“But armed thugs in about seven buses swooped in on the peaceful protesters around 4:00am Monday morning, attacking them with small knives, sticks and machetes.

Before the attack, almost all the protesters had maintained decorum and care not to encroach into the space of the soldiers and policemen guarding the apex bank; but having spent the most of the night without sleep, they were too weak and disorganized to resist the hoodlums.

In the chaos that ensued, laptops, mobile phones, cars and other valuables were destroyed. ““The hoodlums who infiltrated the ranks of the #EndSARS protest, attacked one Anthony Onome Unuode and left him with various degrees of injury which eventually resulted in death.““However, that was not to be the end of the attacks on the protesters. ““Determined to leave no room for the continuation of the #EndSARS agitation in the nation’s capital, the hoodlums chased the protesters around town in buses and SUVs.

But the #EndSARS protests continued to gain momentum in different parts of Abuja that day. In Apo, Kuje, Sokale and Tasha-Bwari districts, the protests showed no sign of abating as more youths joined the mass action.“So, the #EndSARS protesters began resisting the hoodlums, operating under the Pro-SWAT banner, at the Central Business District in Abuja.“The ensuing clash propelled the Commissioner of Police FCT command, CP Bala Ciroma, to appeal for calm between both parties.

Also, soldiers were deployed to all strategic points in Abuja where the protesters usually converged as well as all government assets, including the CBN, National Secretariat, among others.

Despite the heavy security presence in the nation’s capital, on Monday, hoodlums burnt down over 50 cars at Apo Mechanic village, Abuja.

The cars, displayed for sale at a car stand, were set ablaze by alleged thugs hired to disrupt the agitation for comprehensive police reform.

The miscreants had attempted to attack the #EndSARS protesters at Apo during their rally. However, the demonstrators overpowered and repelled them

But by the time the hoodlums reinforced and came back to the scene, the #EndSARS protesters had dispersed.

Angered, the hoodlums attacked a car stand at Jesus Avenue, along Apo Mechanic Village and set it ablaze.

Those around the scene of the incident, said the thugs vandalised other valuables in the area and harassed them.

“The next day, no fewer than seven persons were killed in Abuja as hoodlums intensified their attacks on #EndSARS protesters.

One person was killed in Waru settlement, Apo district of Abuja, while six others were killed by the hoodlums at Dutse Alhaji area of the Bwari Area Council in Abuja.

In the Waru attack, properties worth millions of naira were also destroyed in the attack that started at about 8:00am

An eyewitness, who preferred anonymity, said the man who died was warned against proceeding to Waru settlement because hoodlums had reportedly laid an ambush for #EndSARS protesters in the area.

As a result of the tensed atmosphere in the area, many women and children fled the area to safer districts.

Meanwhile, many young male residents in Apo and its environs moved about the streets with weapons of all sorts for self-defense.

Similarly, in the Dutse Alhaji area of Abuja, at least, six people were feared killed, following attempts by hoodlums to hijack the #EndSARS protest.

One of those killed was said to have been among a group of people who attacked the #EndSARS protesters.

While the identities of his killers were not known, five other people were allegedly killed by security operatives.

The development caused panic in the area. Consequently, irate youths razed down the police post in the area.

Eyewitnesses accused security operatives of turning a blind eye to attacks by hoodlums while swooping on #EndSARS protesters.

Earlier, tension brewed in some parts of Sokale and FO1 areas of Kubwa, following the invasion by soldiers who fired sporadically into the air to disperse some #EndSARS protesters who had gathered to begin the day’s protest.

Meanwhile, the Minister of Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCT), Muhammad Bello, said security operatives had arrested some of the hoodlums who infiltrated the #ENDSARS protesters camp.

The minister spoke during an on-the-spot assessment of Apo and Dutse Alhaji areas where hooligans killed some residents and vandalised several properties.

The Minister said the FCT Police Command had already arrested arrowheads of the violent protests. He added that security agents were still making efforts to arrest more culprits.

So, he called on community leaders and heads of market associations to fish out those who participated in the violent protests.

“In the interim, normalcy has returned to the Abuja, after the destruction of lives and properties by those who took advantage of #ENDSARS protest to unleash terror on innocent residents of the FCT.

Also, business activities resumed in many parts of the city as shops and offices have opened for operation.

Vanguard

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