The National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno, has hinted that President Muhammadu Buhari would in some hours come up with solutions to the ongoing #EndSARS protests in the country.
The protests by young Nigerians demanding an end to police brutality escalated on Tuesday, October 20, when some soldiers opened fire at the unarmed protesters at Lekki toll gate, Lagos State.
Buhari had been taciturn over the incident that had been decried by several foreign countries and international bodies.
The president, however, had a meeting with service chiefs and head of other security agencies on Thursday.
After the meeting, Monguno told newsmen that the current situation in the country was “a very grave situation, giving a lot of concern to everyone” including Buhari.
He said, “Mr. President has directed that government should do whatever is necessary in order to bring about an agreeable resolution to this crisis.
“So far, the government has been able to concede to the demands of the protesters. The initial demands have been considered and it appears now that the riots are taking a different and unwanted dimension. And Mr. President is very concerned about this development and does not want a situation in which everything breaks down and results in anarchy, in lawlessness and people taking the law into their own hands.
“For one thing, if the government can begin to make concessions, then its also logical for the protesters, those that are aggrieved also to take a step back, take stock of their activities and come to a meeting point with the government and its agencies.
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“It is not Mr. President’s desire to see any unwanted loss of lives and he is determined to ensure that things do not cascade into unpleasant situation. Therefore, he has directed all the security agencies to operate within the confines of legitimacy, the confines of legality, not to do anything that will aggravate the situation.
“The President himself, I have just left his office, is also going to deal with these issues in a specific manner apart from what has just taken place in council. I believe in the next couple of hours Mr. President will come up with certain solutions that will be agreeable to the entire federation.
“Again, I have spoken with my colleagues in security, to also understand that these situations also require non-kinetic efforts which we are also working on, to appease who are aggrieved and there is no need to take this thing further. But it is extremely important for the youths to understand that, if the atmosphere is not conducive for dialogue and understanding, we can’t have any peaceful resolution.
“The security agencies have been asked to apply as much restraint as possible. But then again, the youths should also understand that pushing their luck might also result in an unwanted issues. So, it is very important for everyone to take stock of what has already happened and not give a dark impression of this country to the international community.
“Mr. President is going to look at each issue on its merit before coming up with the solution as the chief security officer of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”