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Democracy Day: Police arrest June 12 protesters in Ibadan

12 June

Reported by Ayooluwa Afolabi

Five June 12 protesters wearing ‘Revolution Now’ jackets were, on Wednesday, arrested at Mokola Roundabout in Ibadan by officers of the Nigeria Police Force.

They were among protesters who gathered to demonstrate under the aegis of ‘Take It Back Movements’ in collaboration with Concerned Nigerians, another advocacy and human rights group.

According to Premium Times, the protesters had gathered for a peaceful protest on the state of the nation.

They demanded an end to hardship in the country, insecurity, police brutality and kidnapping, reversal of electricity tariff hike, and an end to attacks on press freedom, among other things.

According to one of the protesters, they had planned the protest to coincide with the Democracy Day celebration.

They began protesting around 9.15 a.m., singing songs, displaying a long banner and placards with inscriptions like ‘We are hungry,’ ‘Justice cannot be silenced,’ ‘The power of people is greater than the people in power,’ ‘United we stand, divided we fall.’

But around 9:30 a.m., operatives, led by the Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Adebola Hamzat, accosted and dragged the demonstrators into a white Hilux bus.

The arrest was done amid the heavy presence of police operatives, with Hilux buses and an armoured tank on standby.

Wearing a black T-shirt and jeans, Mr Hamzat stepped out of one of the Hilux buses in his entourage and ordered their arrest.

He queried the officers present at the scene, berating them for allowing the protesters to carry on with the protest despite his repeated warnings and public statements.

In anticipation of the 12 June mass protests that might be held across Ibadan, there was a heavy presence of police personnel in several places on Wednesday.
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