Operatives of the Lagos State Police Command have arrested activists protesting against the recent hike in the price of petroleum and electricity tariff in the country.
According to a report by The Punch, four journalists covering the protest were also arrested with their gadgets around Ojuelegba area of Lagos State on Thursday.
“We have just been arrested alongside several members of the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) and journalists for protesting this morning against fuel price hike, electricity tariff, and deregistration of SPN,” Hassan Soweto, who is the National Youth Leader of SPN and one of the leaders of the protesters told newsmen.
“I am typing this message at the back of a police van taking us to Area C, Police Command, Lagos.”
Dimeji Macaulay, SPN Organising Secretary, who confirmed the incident in a statement, condemned the arrest.
He noted that the country is gradually slipping into a military dictatorship, calling on all Nigerians to rise and condemn the act.
“We condemn this attack as part of the continuous descent of the country into a brutish state of military repression. It is completely unacceptable, and we enjoin all Nigerians interested in preserving this country’s hard-earned democracy to condemn this emboldened descent into a civilian-military dictatorship,” Macaulay said.
“We demand a public apology from the police for this ridiculous and unprofessional action taking against our comrades, and we ask that proper disciplinary measures be taken on those security officers involved.”
“It’s important for you to note that demonstrations and protests are a global phenomenon and are a part of the development of any society.”
Macaulay identified some of those arrested as Dagga Tolar, Ayo Ademiluyi, Chinedu Bosah, Lexan Ali, Fidel Davynovich, Oluwole Engels, Soweto, and eight others.
Muyiwa Adejobi, Lagos Police Public Relations Officer could not be reached at the time of filing this report. Calls put across to him were not answered. He also did not reply to a text message sent to his phone.