DSS Warns Organised Labour To Shun Planned Protest

February 21, 2024
#EndSARS Protesters

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Department of State Services (DSS) has urged Nigerians planning to protest next week led by organised labour to halt the idea.

According to a statement from the spokesperson of the Nigerian secret police on Wednesday, Mr Peter Afunanya, there were plans by sections of the organised labour to stage protests in parts of the country over sundry economic issues between February 27 and 28, 2024

“While the Service recognises such action as the legitimate right of the labour movement, it, however, urges the body to shelve the plan in the interest of peace and public order,” it explicitly stated.

The DSS further called on parties to pursue other steps including dialogue and negotiation rather than “engaging in conducts that could heighten tensions,” it added.

“This is more so that the Service is aware that some elements are planning to use the opportunity of the protest to foment crisis and by extension, widespread violence. The development, without doubt, will worsen the socio-economic situation across the country,” the DSS said.

It said that instead of protesting, the parties should let the government act on its interventions to ease the hardships as promised.

“It is common knowledge that all levels of Government are striving to ameliorate the prevailing economic condition and as such, should be given a benefit of the doubt. So far, appropriate authorities are working assiduously with a spectrum of stakeholders to fashion out modalities to address the current difficulties. They should, therefore, be given the chance to handle the challenges at hand.”

Using an allegory, the secret police said there was a high chance of the protest escalating into something else.

“In this vein, citizens are encouraged to recognise that what remains unsolved in peacetime, would not be attained in war-time. The timeless piece of the esteemed Poet, JP Clark, “The Casualties” is a resonating reminder to us of the possible dangers of escalated conflicts. In times of trouble, everyone will be a casualty.”

The DSS drew distinctions with ongoing wars on the global scene, saying it is a stark reminder of their catastrophic repercussions on the affected countries’ domestic environments.

“Those exploiting the fault lines in the country need to have a rethink as resorting to negativities will endanger our peaceful coexistence with dire consequences,” it warned.

It charged authoritative entities including parents, religious bodies, and other institutions to interfere in the issue and ensure safety.

“Parents and guardians are implored to exert authority in guiding their children and wards from inimical acts capable of jeopardising public safety and harmony.

‘Additionally, all sectors, including political parties, opposition groups, religious and traditional institutions, civil society and non-governmental bodies are called upon to eschew violence; demonstrate leadership and statesmanship in these challenging times.”

The DSS also said there was a high chance of the planned protest being hijacked by politically oriented parties, and said citizens should be on high alert.

“Making political capital out of the current situation or involving in divisive utterances at a time like this, will be of no benefit to any peace-loving Nigerian. Citizens are advised to be vigilant and not allow fifth columnists and hostile forces or agents to use them to destabilise the peace of the nation.

“The DSS stands opposed to violence as a means of settling our present-day challenges, be they economic, political or otherwise.”

Adedapo Adesanya

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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