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Economic hardship: Police warn against protest in Ekiti

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The police in Ekiti State on Thursday warned against staging an “End Nigeria Protest” believed to be organised by an unknown group in any part of the state, saying such an act capable of threatening existing peace was unacceptable.

The Commissioner of Police, Adeniran Akinwale, enjoined all stakeholders, parents, and peace lovers “to warn their wards to be law-abiding citizens and shun all acts that could aggregate tension, cause chaos and puncture the current peaceful atmosphere in the state as those found wanting will be made to face the full wrath of the law.

Akinwale said that, although the law enforcement agency recognised citizens’ constitutional rights to protest or gather peacefully, it would not compromise its commitment to ensuring the safety of lives and property as well as maintenance of law, order, and a peaceful atmosphere.

The CP, according to a statement by the Police Public Relations Officer, Sunday Abutu, spoke in Ado Ekiti during an emergency stakeholders meeting held in his office to review the rumour circulating on social media about a possible protest tagged “End Nigeria Hardship” to be held on Friday by an unknown group.

He stated, “A situation where such protest or gathering could be hijacked by unscrupulous elements and consequently endangering the lives and property of innocent citizens and the government as well as jeopardising the current fragile peace in the country and by extension, Ekiti State, will be unacceptable”.

He advised community leaders and landlords “to be wary of those they give accommodations and harbour within their territories and the embarrassment their infractions could cause the state, as anyone indicted in criminal acts or found harbouring criminals will be investigated and prosecuted accordingly.

“All citizens are therefore enjoined to be security conscious, vigilant and support the police and other security agencies with credible and timely information that could help to nip crime in the bud as the security of our dear society is a collective responsibility,” the CP stated.

However, no fewer than 100 farmers whose farmlands were affected by the construction of Ekiti cargo airport had in November, last year, protested at the Governor’s Office in Ado Ekiti over their unpaid compensation.

The placards-carrying farmers, who came from about five affected communities namely; Igbogun, Afao, Araromi Obo, Aso Ayegunle, and Igbemo Ekiti, expressed dissatisfaction with the refusal of the government to pay the compensations despite promising them.

The spokesman for the farmers and the Edemon of Igbemo Ekiti, Chief Awe Ojo, said that nothing had been heard from the state government after their meeting with the governor in June 2023 where they were promised succour within two weeks.

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