Northern Group Suspends Protests over Insecurity

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By John Shiklam

The Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) has suspended its #EndInsecurityNow protest across northern states.

In a statement issued yesterday, the spokesman of the group, Abdulhazeez Suleiman, said the CNG was disturbed

By the happenings across the country, especially the “raiding of Benin Central Prison, Edo State, leading to the escape of inmates all in the name of #EndSARS protest.”

The statement said while the coalition has no quarrel with people expressing their grievances by holding peaceful protest, “we, however, find it disturbing that protests want to degenerate into lawlessness and brigandage.

“Consequent upon this, the CNG categorically states that it will neither associate with, or identify with, nor recognise any movement by any persons, groups or from whichever section or class in the country that portends greater danger to the country or tends to tilt towards anarchy.”

It stated further that: “In this light, we condemn with all our might, the actions of those who perpetrate criminal acts in the guise of protests anywhere in Nigeria, and strongly denounce those who instigate others to commit acts of violence and lawlessness under whatever pretext.

“We thus emphatically repudiate the reported raid of the Benin prison facility, and deem any further act of brigandage on the public and public assets not only immoral and illegal but also condemnable and abhorrent to the country’s sensibilities and ordinary decency.”

Suleiman said: “The CNG hereby impresses on all its formations on the #EndInsecurityNow protests across the 19 northern states to desist from identifying with the protests, and shun any act that may further cause additional instability in the region and potentially affects the general peace of the country.

“We urge them to remain decent, orderly and civilized as they peacefully press for action to end the bleeding in the North without molesting or oppressing fellow citizens and provoking public disorder.

“The #EndInsecurityNow protests in the northern states must not be seen to cause public fear through traffic disruptions, rampage on private and public assets or involved with provocative utterances, altercations and other forms of indecent conduct.

“With this development, the CNG hereby directs all its state chapters to immediately stay further action and suspend all protests forthwith effectively from October 20, 2020.”