A coalition of Nigerian Youth Groups comprising of Nigerian Students’ Parliament (NSP), Progressive Nigerian Youths Alliance, Niger Delta Youth Council and Nigerian Youth Vanguard (NYV) has faulted the CNN report on the #EndSARS protests.
The spokesperson of the coalition group and National Speaker of the Nigerian Students’ Parliament (NSP); Rt.Hon. Mubarak Aliyu who spoke to pressmen Lagos during an emergency meeting of the youth groups in preparation of the National Youth Confab 2020, described the CNN report as a dramatization of scripts written by enemies of Nigeria, attempting to stir up another round of unrest in the country.
Mubarak said that CNN is expected to unravel the truth that will help in finding lasting solution to the crisis instead of playing the devilish script of fanners of disunity in Nigeria.
He further said that if CNN is interested in unraveling the truth without any iota of bias, it should be balanced, objective and make its findings available to the Lagos judicial panel instead of concocting nasty stories, using old doctored videos to misinform the public.
We are Nigerian Youths, Nigeria is our only country and the Nigerian police, army and other security agencies are for Nigeria and Nigerias. We as Progressive coalition youth groups together with other Nigerian civil society organizations of goodwill will continually support the armed forces of Nigeria and all other security agencies in thick and in thin to secure our country, defend her from all forms of internal insurrection including the war on terror, Mubarak pointed.
He further stated thus:
“the ill fated dramatic investigative report on the EndSARS Protest as midwifed by CNN is substandard to reports known with the CNN for years standing.
CNN cannot talk of massacre without showing us dead bodies to corroborate the narrative. The organisation can not claim firing live ammunition without showing live ammunition. All those who were alleged to have died in the ‘massacre’ of whom some are members of various youths and students groups have came out to debunk it as the figment of the imagination of those who packaged the fake news just to blackmail the Nigerian police, Nigerian Army and the Federal Government.
We are not saying CNN shouldn’t carry out its lawful duty…all we urge them to do is to ensure they do investigative journalism, be objective and fair which must be in tandem with established protocol and convention, not propagating fake news or allowing politically- disgruntled elements and enemies of the state to use them in making chaotic, violence induced reportage against the public.
We have been consistently following the day to day processes of the EndSars matter, before, during, aftermath and have noted that the Nigerian police and the Army have been vilified by international organizations severally for carrying out their lawful duty.
In the circumstance where ENDSARS protest was terribly hijacked by hoodlums, violence, killing of security agents and blatant destruction of private and public properties became rampant, it is only fair to commend those agencies that courageously, selflessly and patriotically came out to stop the madness, lawlessness and savagery. In this instance the Nigerian army and the police deserve our commendation not Condemnation. We commend the leadership of the Nigerian army and that of the police force for their foresight, professionalism and proactiveness in defending our democracy and saving the nation from both ENDSARS PROTESTERS and their supporters and financiers from the local and international communities. The press release issued by the army headquarters soundly warning criminals and hoodlums to stay clear from the streets of Nigeria and the directives given by the chief of army staff to all army personnel to defend the peace, security and Nigeria’s democracy is historic and commendable.
Thus, the CNN’s one sided report alleging that the Nigerian Army used live bullets on protesters during its intervention in the #EndSARS protests in Lekki, Lagos State is contrary to official position of most international organisation that are investigating the matter and even that of concerned league of Youth groups in Nigeria.
In confirmation of reports from our various chapter coordinators within the major sub-towns in Lagos and Lekki in Particular, the Nigerian Army has strongly denied using live rounds, insisting that its soldiers used blank bullets and shot only into the air, same as we were told by our fellow youths across the country.
What is intriguing in CNN’s report is its sordid lopsidedness where all the killings, destruction, arson and pillaging of police stations and correctional centres across the nation were unreported in the report. In this case, CNN appears unconcerned and happy when Nigeria is on fire.
In the light of the above, we the Nigerian youth groups have resolved that during our forthcoming National Confab, we will once again powerfully come up with a unifying position on this matter and the way forward. CNN’s report is not just nefarious and shameless, but also clueless” and should be disregarded by well meaning Nigerians, Mubarak concluded.