IFP calls on Ramaphosa to intervene in Nigeria's #Endsars protests

21 October 2020 - 20:49 By zimasa matiwane
Nigerians living in SA gathered at parliament in Cape Town to show solidarity for the #EndSars movement against police brutality in Nigeria.
Nigerians living in SA gathered at parliament in Cape Town to show solidarity for the #EndSars movement against police brutality in Nigeria.
Image: Esa Alexander

The IFP has called on Cyril Ramaphosa — in his capacity as AU chairperson — to urgently intervene in the #Endsars protests in Nigeria by raising allegations of military brutality against civilians to the UN Security Council.

“The IFP calls on President Cyril Ramaphosa to urgently intervene to raise this matter at the UN Security Council and as chairperson of the AU, to call for an extraordinary meeting together with the Ecowas [Economic Community of West African States] regional block, to ensure that the stability of the West African region is not threatened,” party spokesperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa said.

This follows reports alleging that 12 people were killed and others wounded when soldiers opened fire on protesters Tuesday night. The army dismissed the reports as “fake news”. President Muhammadu Buhari has appealed for “understanding and calm”.

The #EndSars movement erupted earlier this month following as Nigerians called for the Buhari's administration to abolish the now-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (Sars).
The #EndSars movement erupted earlier this month following as Nigerians called for the Buhari's administration to abolish the now-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (Sars).
Image: Esa Alexander

The protests which erupted this month are calling for the abolishment of the notorious Special Anti-Robbery Squad (Sars) which is accused of beating up and torturing citizens.

“The ongoing and escalating violence in Nigeria must be condemned in the strongest terms. The use of military force against innocent civilians undermines human rights, democratic principles and freedom,” said Hlengwa.

He added that SA had a role to play in calling out any injustices that arise in the African continent.

“We cannot idly stand by while our fellow African brothers and sisters are being brutally killed by their own government.”

The IFP has also called on the department of international relations & co-operation to ascertain the safety of South African citizens living and working in Lagos, and Nigeria in general, and to ensure that through our missions, assistance is given to our citizens, where required.

“We respect that Nigeria is a federal republic and therefore urge President Ramaphosa to reach out to his Nigerian counterpart, President Muhammadu Buhari, to urge him to restore peace and security in the state of Lagos.

“We welcome any form of investigation by the federal government of Nigeria to find the underlying cause of this matter and we call for calm, restraint and for dialogue, which may address the very relevant concerns expressed by protesters,” Hlengwa added.

The IFP conveyed its condolences to the families and loved ones of those who were killed during these protests, and the Nigerians in SA.

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