The governor of Nigeria’s Osun state has escaped what officers name an “assassination try” when armed individuals attacked anti-police brutality protesters within the state capital Osogbo.
After marching with the protesters, Governor Adegboyega Oyetola was addressing them when pictures had been fired.
Mr Oyetola was not harm however a few of his aides had been wounded.
Nigeria has been rocked by greater than two weeks of protests in opposition to the Sars police unit.
Its officers are accused of extortion, torture and homicide.
The federal government has promised to disband Sars (Particular Anti Theft Squad) however this has not glad the protesters, who’ve now broadened their calls for, calling for an finish to many years of corruption and mismanagement in Africa’s largest oil producer, which has left many younger Nigerians with bleak financial prospects.
1000’s of principally younger individuals have been taking to the streets of cities throughout the nation each day.
The protests have additionally been backed by international celebrities corresponding to Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, US rapper Kanye West, footballers Mesut Ozil and Marcus Rashford in addition to Nigerian superstars Davido and Wizkid.
What occurred in Osun?
A bunch of individuals armed with weapons and machetes opened fireplace on the time Mr Oyetola was addressing the protesters within the Osun state capital Osogbo – after he had marched and sang with them.
The officers had been hurriedly taken into their autos for security.
Stones had been additionally hurled on the official convoy because it left.
The governor’s spokesperson instructed the BBC that the governor and his deputy survived the assault unharmed however some aides had been wounded and an area journalist was in crucial situation as a consequence of a critical head damage.
Officers say the assault was not carried out by the protesters however by thugs.
Comparable assaults on the protesters have additionally occurred within the capital, Abuja, and the nation’s largest metropolis, Lagos. It isn’t clear who’s behind them.
Mr Oyetola is from the identical celebration as President Muhammadu Buhari, the All Progressives Congress.
What do the protesters need now?
The hashtag #EndBadGovernance has now been shared by nearly 1.eight million twitter customers, whereas #BetterNigeria and #FixNigeriaNow are additionally being broadly used.
They see us protesting, they name us jobless
They see us making a life for ourselves, they name us lazy youths
They see us combating for our rights, they name us weak and ship us thugs
Nigerians are drained, we the youths are drained! 💔🤬#ENDBADGOVERNANCE
— the kelechi † (@_igwilo) October 18, 2020
“So long as there isn’t any constructive change, we will probably be right here,” one man instructed the BBC at a protest in Abuja on Saturday.
“The leaders, the elders have failed us. We have to start the method of constructing a brand new nation by popping out like this,” he stated.
An unprecedented problem to Nigeria’s leaders
By Ishaq Khalid, BBC Information, Abuja
The continuing protests are clearly a robust message not solely to the present authorities however to your complete political class in Nigeria.
The relentlessness of the younger individuals is rare. Demonstrations like these not often final for greater than three days however these ones at the moment are of their third week with none signal of a let-off. As a substitute, they look like gathering momentum.
In addition to calling for an finish to dangerous governance and poor financial circumstances, some protesters are additionally starting to demand extra motion from the federal government to sort out widespread insecurity within the north of the nation, the place armed prison gangs perform lethal assaults and kidnap individuals for ransom.
The federal government’s response to a number of the calls for of the protesters has been unprecedented too.
It has pledged to disband Sars, arrange of panels to research and prosecute erring law enforcement officials and promised wider police reforms.
One other uncommon gesture is the general public apology by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, who admitted that the federal government had not acted quick sufficient to handle younger individuals’s considerations.
However the protesters stay unhappy, saying they want extra motion.
It’s apparent Nigerian officers are nervous in regards to the ongoing protests and are deliberating how you can deal with them earlier than they get out of hand.
Now that the calls for of the protesters are widening and their chants start to incorporate anti-government slogans, there’s hypothesis that some political opponents of President Muhammadu Buhari may be fuelling the protests from behind the scenes.