#RESUMEOrResign protesters have reacted to
comments made by the Senate on the protest
asking President Muhammadu Buharito resume
office or resign after his three-month absence.
In a statement released by the group, they said
that the brutality of the Police against them was
unprovoked.
They condemned the Chairman of the Media
Committee of the Senate, Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi
for his comments on the sit-outs.
Abdullahi had according to NAN referred
to the protest as “noise making,” saying the
President has broken no law by staying away from
the country for so long. He said:
The president has broken no law and therefore
we do not see any justification for this diversion
and noise-making.
The sponsors are merely seeking cheap
publicity at the expense of the peace of Nigeria.
We, in the National Assembly, are satisfied that
there is no vacuum. The Federal Government is
working.
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo is providing
the required leadership. So, there is no reason for
the protests.
All Nigerians now should focus on praying for
the safe return of the President.
We in the Senate are happy about the report
by the governors and party leaders, who recently
visited President Buhari in London and we
know he will soon return to continue to provide
leadership to our people and the rest of Africa.
We therefore call on the protesters to stop
all these demonstrations and let their sense of
patriotism overshadow the zeal for activism by
joining other Nigerians to pray for the president.
We should also pray for the acting president
and Nigeria as a country at this critical period
Read the statement by the #ResumeorResign
protesters:
1. We have read with utter dismay the
statement credited to the Chairman of the Media
Committee of the Senate, Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi,
condemning our daily #ResumeOrResign sit
outs. Abdullahi’s comments were lacking in the
depth, insight and critical analysis expected of a
Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
2. We have also read the statement credited to
the FCT Abuja Command of the Nigerian Police
Force that it was compelled to disperse today’s sit
out because it was infiltrated by miscreants and
criminal elements. It is disheartening that a law
enforcement agency can resort to such brazen
and easily disproved lies, especially in the face of
an abundance of evidence that participants at the
sit out conducted themselves with decorum and
within the ambit of the law.
3. It is shameful that Abdullahi and the
Nigerian Police deliberately fail, refuse and
neglect to recognise that the Constitution of our
beloved nation guarantees all Nigerians the right
to peacefully gather in furtherance of peaceful
and lawful adjectives.
4. For the avoidance of doubt, we hereby clarify
the following facts:
a. We informed the Police and the State Security
Service (SSS) of our intention to hold this peaceful
sit out starting from Monday August 7th, 2017.
b. Having conducted ourselves peacefully and
properly on Monday, we sought to conduct our
daily sit out in the same manner today. We were
surprised to find Policemen at the Unity Park
venue of the sit out in large number but sought to
peacefully go about our affairs.
c. None of the participants at our sit out was
armed or carrying weapons of any sort.
d. None of our participants were confrontational
or aggressive with the Police. At various points, we
insisted on our rights to peacefully gather but at
no time was any policeman or officer threatened
with physical violence of any sort.
e. There is an abundance of evidence on social
media that shows that at all times the Nigerian
Police was the aggressor using attack dogs, tear
gas, water cannons and other such materials to
threaten, harass and intimidate participants at
the sit out.
5. In the face of such evidence, it is shameful
that a Senator, who ought to act as a custodian
of our laws and deploy deep insight in the
protection of the civil rights and liberties of the
Nigerian people, speaks in such a manner. It
seems that Abdullahi requires a crash course
in the protection of the civil rights of the
Nigerian people. In this wise, we refer him to
the comments of Senator Shehu Sani where the
latter clarifies that we have a right to convene
peacefully to press home our demands.
As it stands, with comments like the ones made
by Abdullahi, it seems as though the Senate has
taken an anti-people position and is willing to
side with the cabal that seeks to hold Nigeria and
all Nigerians hostage by every means necessary.
It is, therefore, imperative for all members
of the Senate such as Senator Shehu Sani who
are willing to side with the Nigerian people to
stand up and speak out in order to protect our
democracy.

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