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Ooni of Ife reacts to Lekki shootings, calls govt, #EndSARS protesters to order

LAGOS, Nigeria – The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, has condemned the killing of youths at Lekki tollgate in Lagos State.

Ooni Ogunwusi also offered to lead traditional rulers in Nigeria to mediate between the Federal Government and organisers of the End SARS protests, adding that the killings of unarmed young protesters at Lekki toll gate is disheartening and regrettable.

In a statement issued by his media aide, Moses Olafare, on Wednesday, Ooni Ogunwusi said it was time for both the Federal Government and organisers of the End SARS protests to calm down and allow traditional rulers lead the way to peace and restoration of trust in the land.

Recall that men of the Nigerian Army reportedly opened fire on protesters in Lekki tollgate, on Tuesday night.

This is coming a few hours after a 24 hours curfew was imposed by the Lagos state Governor, Babajide Sanwolu.

But, the Army had denied the presence of its soldiers at the scene of the incident.

The statement read in part: “Tension has risen on both sides. It’s time to calm down and allow traditional rulers, as fathers of the Nation to lead the way to peace and restoration of trust.

“We must find amicable solutions even though this Lekki Toll Gate attack, has regrettably eroded the trust needed to establish dialogue and ensure a civic process for resolving the crises. We must not be tired.

“Our political leadership must immediately investigate the circumstances that led to the avoidable confrontation and consequent loss of lives to swiftly fish out the unlawful attackers who must be made to face the law.

“We need to manage the process of listening to them and working with them to jointly arrive at the new Nigeria of our collective dreams, a dream that President Muhammadu Buhari has recognised as a statesman and our president.

“There is no doubt the exploitation of the protests by criminals attacking prisons, police stations and public facilities put the government on edge and might have led to the military option, but it’s important to separate hoodlums committing these heinous crimes from protesters gathered in a specific location to draw attention to their legitimate demands.

“There is a clear difference between the criminal hoodlums who have begun to hijack the hitherto peaceful protests and the patriotic Nigerian youths who were daily converging at the Lekki Toll Gate in Lagos and selected locations in other states including Abuja FCT in line with global best practices of protest gathering.”

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