President Muhammadu Buhari’s spokesperson, Femi Adesina, has told protesters to be patient while their demands are implemented by the government.
Nigerians have been protesting nationwide for over a week for the scrapping of the now-defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force, a unit with a long history of abuse of power.
And even though the government dissolved the unit earlier this week, protesters have refused to back down, expressing discontent with the government’s reform efforts.
When quizzed about the ongoing protests during an interview on Channels TV on Thursday, October 15, 2020, Adesina said those that are doubting the government’s resolve have a right to their opinion.
However, he said governance requires more than quick fixes and that protesters will have to exercise patience.
“You don’t wave a magic wand that things change overnight.
“Some things are processes and procedures and unless you follow those processes and procedures, they will not happen and that is what the people should realise,” he said.
The president’s spokesperson said the government is engaging faithfully with the demands of the protesters to implement comprehensive police reform.
He proceeded to suggest that the continuation of the protest is being fueled by people with ulterior motives, a familiar accusation being pushed by the government.
“Even the original founders of the #EndSARS protests are beginning to change their minds and opinions about what is happening now because it is veering off the original intention.
“It’s not unlikely that some people are cashing in off it to do some other things,”Adesina said.
At least 10 protesters have been killed, and many assaulted by police officers since the protests started over a week ago.
Hoodlums have also attacked the protesters in Lagos and Abuja and injured some while also damaging property.