The June 12 nationwide protest embarked upon by youths and members of the civil society attracted combined security operatives in Edo State as they were at the National Museum, Benin, venue of the takeoff point of the protest to forestall possible break down of law and order.
It was, however, observed that the security personnel on ground at venue if the protest were more than the number of the June 12 protesters.
The June 12 protesters brandished placards of various inscriptions that read thus: ‘Respect human rights’; the economy is in shambles’; ’22 years after we are back on the streets fighting for democracy’; #Insecurity, #Statepolicing, stop capitalism.’
The activities of the protesters caused a huge traffic jam at the major streets of Benin City as they marched peacefully to the state government house where they were received by the deputy governor, Philip Shaibu.
Speaking at the government house, President, Faculty of Peace Organisation, Kelly Osunbor Omokaro said 22 years down the line, the freedom of speech that has been the hallmark of democracy has been muzzled.
He said, Nigerians are more free to express themselves during the military era than when they have claimed to have been practicing democracy.
While narrowing their worries to the state of Edo State, he said the composition of the State House of Assembly leaves much to be so desired and that the deputy governor must raise to save the situation.
Osunbor also said since the end of the #EndSARS panel and recommendations made, the state government is yet to implement any.
Speaking also, Barr. Abraham Oviawe urged the government to improve on the security situation of the state especially on our major highways.
For the President, One Love Foundation, Patrick Eholor, the government must push for state police to ensure the safety of lives and property of the citizens of the state.
Responding, the deputy governor, Philip Shaibu, said the 14 elected lawmakers of the House of Assembly decided to go with their godfather despite his plea that they should make themselves available for inauguration.
He said when the House of Assembly waited patiently for their return, they failed to show up and their seats were declared vacant by the Speaker of the House.
Shaibu, who said that the matter is still in the court blamed godfatherism as the bane of democracy in the country.
The deputy governor further joined them in the peaceful protest before retreating to his office.