The African Union Condemns Violence Against #EndSARS Protesters in Nigeria
The African Union Commission chairperson has (finally) condemned the deadly violence against protesters calling for an end to police brutality in Nigeria. However, many feel the body's declaration is a little too late.
The recent statement from the AU comes after Amnesty International Nigeria confirmed that the Nigerian military had fired live ammunition at the protesters. The body announced, "Evidence gathered from eyewitnesses, video footage and hospital reports confirm that between 6:45pm and 9:00pm on Tuesday 20 October, the Nigerian military opened fire on thousands of people who were peacefully calling for an end to police brutality."
Prior to Amnesty International Nigeria's announcement, the Nigerian military had vehemently denied both their presence and involvement in the shooting at Lekki Toll Gate. They even went as far as labelling their involvement as "fake news" on their Twitter account.
Many on social media have expressed their skepticism towards the announcement particularly after the AU, the United Nations (UN) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) were deafeningly silent following the violence in Nigeria.
The government of Nigeria has declared war on its own citizens. The African Union and ECOWAS must call on Presiden… https://t.co/1utgsVkntd— Shailja Patel (@Shailja Patel)1603219528.0
You are expecting the same African Union that has shielded the likes of Paul Biya for years to have anything useful to say about #EndSARS?— Onye Nkuzi (@Onye Nkuzi)1603314117.0
The functions of the UN and African Union that we learnt in school was and is still a Scam😢😪😪💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔 #EndSARS S… https://t.co/R5EPq5nCmc— 🌺Motown Rihanna🌺💉🌍 (@🌺Motown Rihanna🌺💉🌍)1603261872.0
The BBC reports that ECOWAS has also released a statement which "calls on all protesters to remain peaceful in the conduct of their demonstrations." Additionally, the body has also urged "Nigerian security operatives to exercise restraint in the handling of the protests and act professionally."
While there has been no official death toll, Amnesty International estimates that at least 56 people have been killed since the #EndSARS protests began with about 38 having been killed this past Tuesday alone.
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