The Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, has claimed that President Muhammadu Buhari tolerated the “excesses” of the #EndSARS protesters, adding that no country would accommodate such.
Recall that youths had taken to the streets on October 2020, to protest against police brutality, while calling for the disbandment of the now-defunct special anti-robbery squad (SARS).
The protest which was initially peaceful was infiltrated by hoodlums to cause destruction in major cities of the country.
Speaking ob Wednesday on Politics Today, a programme on Channels Television, Malami said that “over 200 policemen were killed in the process of the purported freedom of expression”.
“I think the government of President Muhammadu Buhari has been very, and indeed extraordinarily, lenient with the human rights protection and that was indeed what caused the problems associated with the violations of the #EndSARS protests,” he said.
“Take for example: no nation in the world could have tolerated a situation whereby over 200 of its policemen were killed in the purported process of freedom of expression. Nigeria has tolerated that.
“No nation in the world could have tolerated the idea of destruction to its security institutions. I think over 20 police stations or more — I’m not certain about the number, they can be more — were destroyed during #EndSARS protests and government has a responsibility to ensure protection of lives and freedom of movement.
“We are confronted with a situation whereby #EndSARS protesters blocked roads, caused mayhem, caused deaths, caused destruction, and they were significantly tolerated to a certain extent.”
AGF Malami insisted that Buhari protected human rights by accommodating and tolerating the “excesses of the #EndSARS protesters”.
“I think it is only logical for one to conveniently, logically and justifiably conclude that the government of President Muhammadu Buhari has shown greater zeal in terms of protection, and indeed given accommodation to human rights, to the extent of perhaps accommodating the excesses, which ordinarily ought to have been engaged and confronted squarely,” Malami added.