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Civil Society group appeals to police to suspend proposed peaceful protest



• Says police embarking on strike will risk Nigerians

• Urges Buhari, Police commission, IG to implement new wages for the police

Foremost civil rights group, the Conference for the Actualization of Human Rights, CAHR, activists and others have appealed to Nigerian police to sheath it proposed peaceful protest and strike, adding that it would not only risk the security of the country but would bastardise the image of the federal government.

Speaking at a press conference held in Warri, Delta state on Friday evening, the Director General of the Conference for the Actualization of Human Rights, CAHR, Omes Ogedegbe appealed to Nigerian police to discard moves for any peaceful protest and strike to avoid uncertainties.

Omes stated, “On behalf of the Conference for the Actualization of Human Rights, CAHR, we are making a strong appeal to members of Nigerian police force to shun the idea of embarking on a peaceful protest. Why we don’t support the idea of the police protest because it will amount to mutiny. So they should retreat the move to go into protest”.

He further maintained: “Though, the right to protest is the fundamental rights guaranteed in the existing laws of the country. In view of the security challenges in Nigeria it is ill-time for members of Nigerian police force to embark on any civil action. We are appealing to the police to shun the idea of embarking on strike. We are equally soliciting with the Inspector General of Police and police commission to implement the approved new salary structures of the police.

• Says police embarking on strike will risk Nigerians

The national adviser of the group, Comrade Pastor Edewor Egedegbe, doubled as Director of Value Rebirth and Empowerment initiative has equally maintained that police going to protest or strike would risk the security of the country.

His words: “Nigerian police should retreated the planned strike, reason being that Nigeria is engulfed with too many troubles. So going on strike will be unimaginable in a time of this moment. The police commission and IG should as a matter of urgency implement the new salary scheme. Equally, the government and police commission must respond to the police welfare, regarding shelter, maintenance of barracks, patrol vehicles, children fees and others.

“The police are citizens of Nigeria, and their decision to defend the country by joining the police should be lauded, and any move to undermine them will be tantamount to chaos. Nigeria police commission should speedily act and address the police concerns to avoid the looming trouble”, Egedegbe asserted.

•Police new wages be implemented

A business guru who doubled as the Delta state Director of Conference for the Actualization of Human Rights, Comrade Monday Enudi also emphasized that the police threat for strike is justifiable but looking at the security implications, they should back down the protest and any move for strike.

Enudi while speaking added, “I thank the police force for the service to their mother’s land. I am not in support of police embarking on a protest, because we can’t risk the security of this country. We are not in support of their planned protest but we will work with them to ensure an urgent implementation of the new salary scheme. Again, the police commission should be concerned about their accommodation, barracks refurbishing, replacement of old vehicles and other things”.

In the same vein, Comrade Akpowai Uremu, women leader of the group posited:
“I am calling on IG to look into the plight of junior officers as regards their wages, welfare, accommodation and children’s fees. Proper care should be give to families of police officers that died in active service. The police are our brothers. They are our husbands and our friends. They should be given special care. IG and police commission, please listen to them”.

Also speaking Comrade Sunday Atiku, national PRO of Confab and a business giant, said police should not proceed with the planned strike as security of lives and properties are sacrosanct to every Nigerian.

He stressed, “without the police our security is not guaranteed. I urge the commission responsible for the police salary to do something immediately to ensure that the police demands are meant”.

However, Comrade Isreal Arigbe, a business tycoon and State Secretary of Confab, also urged the police to shun their proposed peaceful protest, because it would give serious security implications on the country, adding that the new salary scheme should be implemented.

According to him, “The police commission, IG and the federal government should put heads together and address the police concerns without further delay. The police needs better wages, they work in the sun, rain and night risking their lives. Let them be treated right. We will assist the police to protest against the government if it fails to do the needful”.