A coalition of 19 civil society organisations has asked the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, to convene an emergency session of the Assembly over insecurity in the state.
They also demanded that the Speaker should convey the frustrations of Nigerians on the security situation in the country to President Muhammadu Buhari to address the situation.
The groups stormed the Assembly in Alausa, Ikeja, Friday bearing placards with various inscriptions on the state of insecurity and killing, including that of security personnel across Nigeria.
Convened by Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa in conjunction with 18 other groups, the march culminated in the delivery of a petition which was received by representatives of the House led by Deputy Speaker, Sanni Eshinloku.
This was despite an initial refusal to allow the protesters into the pavilion built for the purpose of meeting with the public.
Executive Director of CAPPA, Akinbode Oluwafemi, said the decision of the coalition to mark the day of mourning was to draw the attention of the lawmakers to the situation and urge them to address the situation urgently.
Vice President of the Joint Action Front, Achike Chude, cautioned that the nation’s drift into anarchy will ultimately consume everybody.
He asked why those at the helm of affairs at state and federal levels continued to handle the matter with levity.
The petition titled ‘Urgent Need to Address Grave Insecurity Situation as Nigerians Mourn’ noted that Nigeria’s struggle with inordinate and escalating insecurity rooted in mass atrocities continued unabated with the ﬁgures in 2020 reaching about 4,556 killings, a signiﬁcant increase beyond the 2019 figure which was 3188.
It read, “The pattern of mass atrocities across the country continues to bear regional nuances, but the lines are increasingly getting blurred. Insurgency, pillages, and communal attacks characterize the major forms of atrocities in the North, while rival gang attacks, killings from mob actions, extrajudicial killings, politically motivated killings, and mob lynching, so-called unknown gunmen attacks and herdsmen attacks have become the order of the day in the South.”
They urged the Assembly to hold a joint session with federal representatives from the state to come up with a unified position on the state of security in the country.
They also asked the lawmakers to commence citizens’ engagement including town hall meetings on specific security challenges in their respective constituencies to arrive at workable and inclusive solutions.
Some of the groups that signed the petition and engaged in the march are Centre for Children’s Health Education, Orientation and Protection (CEE-Hope), Center for Dignity, Centre for Human and Socio-Economic Rights (CHSR), Education Rights Campaign, BudgIT, Global Rights, Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Spaces 4 Change.