Edo State governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has appealed to the youth to embrace peace and dialogue for the interest of the state and the nation, just as assured them that 60 percent of those he would appoint to work with him would be persons of 40 years and below.
Obaseki who made the appeal during a meeting with civil society groups in the state, commended them for calling for an end to police brutality.
While expressing displeasure over the protest being hijacked by hoodlums, he further reviewed the 24-hour curfew to 4pm to 6am, adding that he would consider a further review subsequently should the youth embrace peace.
Obaseki who narrated how he came into office as governor of the state the second term through the help of the youth, said the government has always been against police brutality and that it will always stand with the masses.
“I will not have returned back to the government house but for you. I know the sacrifices a lot of you made, I know the hard work, the risk you took. I am aware of the roles you played, a lot of people brought money and either drove them away or collected the money and do the right thing.
“So, I am very clear in my mind how I came into where I am today. I came back on your back.
“You have no doubt in your mind, I am in your side, totally in your side.
“When this crisis started, I have taken some time off to go and relax after the electionairing period but I have been in touch. I have always been in touch with the deputy and with the secretary to the government.
“And our position as government has always been, we are in support of EndSARS because your demands are legitimate.
“Anybody who says that your people are not patriotic doesn’t love Nigeria. You are not asking for anything unusual, we have always argued and even during my electionairing, I made it clear that we need to fix this country, we have no choice and we started warning when COVID19 broke out, that COVID19 was going to unravel this country and that it is time that we stopped the indulgence and begin to take ourselves seriously and do things properly across the board.
“I can tell you this, my biggest fear in my election, my prayers was that, they should not temper with the election of September 19 and if they had done so, this crisis would have started that day.
“God had our prayers. So, when this crisis started with EndSARS, I was not surprised at all. We have been anticipating it. Things are not right in Nigeria and we need to fix it and we have the capacity to fix it.
“So, your position on EndSARS and the reform of the police system in this country is total. Like somebody said, it is time up for just talking and talking and rhetorics. It is about time to implement”, he said.
One of the speakers, Solomon Idiogbe, while speaking on the vandalisation that took place at the Nigeria Custom Service warehouse at Aduwawa, Benin City, said the incident was a conspiracy and that there was no way such could have happened without the help of an insider.
Idiogbe added that being that such has happened, the government should encourage the security agencies in the state to embark on a house-to-house check with the view to mopping up the arms and ammunition that were carted away by the hoodlums from the Custom warehouse so that the citizens could be safe.
He alleged that some people carted away arms and ammunition from the Custom warehouse at Aduwawa.
Another speaker, Phil Aroje, said the ENDSARS protest might not end unless the president addresses the nation.
He called on the president to address the nation.