May-Day: Police Disperse Protesters In Lagos With Tear GasFeatured, Latest News Thursday, May 1st, 2014
Kayode Adelowokan, Lagos
It was a mild drama in Lagos between men of Nigeria Police Force and a group of concerned Nigerians protesting against the abduction of 234 female students writing exams at the Government Girls Secondary School, Chibok, Borno State.
The protesters had planned to take off on their march from CMS to Onikan Stadium but were dispersed by a large number of policemen who shot tear gas canisters at them.
African Examiner learnt the protesters did not obtain a permit from the police before embarking on the protest.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, had warned all workers to engage in peaceful rallies and avoid using the Workers Day celebration to disrupt peace of the nation.
Scores of Nigerian women, and a few men, had also protested Wednesday in Abuja to demand the release of over 200 girls kidnapped on April 14 by insurgents believed to be members of the extremist Boko Haram sect.
The women, coordinated by Dr Obi Ezekwesili, Mariam Uwaiz, Saudatu Madi and Hadiza Bala Usman, marched from the Unity Fountain from about 3:30pm, singing to register their anger even as the police guided them to their destination.
They said that the demonstration was to register the agony they are feeling as a result of the abduction of the girls.
Thegroup held up placards with inscriptions like; Rescue Our Children, Please Find Our Daughters, Save Our Sisters, Rescue Our Chibok Girls.
Intermittently, they stopped to address the crowd, insisting that not even the rains can stop them until they get to the National Assembly, where the leadership of the National Assembly also defiled the rains to address them.
The Senate President, David Mark, House of Representatives’ speaker, Aminu Tambuwal and his deputy, Emeka Ihedioha, addressed the women.
They stressed that the National Assembly had scheduled a meeting with the president to discuss the issue and assured the women that they would do their best to ensure that the girls would be rescued soon.
Moments later the women returned to the take-off point, where they poured out their anger over what they have been through so far following the abduction of the girls.
Some Nigerian men and concerned fathers, including human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, wonder why the authorities are paying lip service to the welfare and security of the citizens.
This is the second demonstration following the perceived inaction by security agencies
over the abduction and continued detention of those Nigerian girls.
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