Mr Frank Mba , Nigeria Police Command Spokesman vehemently denied this morning on NRI, various news reports that a ban on #bringbackgirls campaign protest was issued by the police high command.
Speaking on Nigeria Radio International, monitored Live in New York, CSP Frank Mba, told Emma Agu that reports that the police command issued a ban on those protesting the abduction of over 230 Chibok School girls is false. During his chat with Emma Agu, Mr Mba read through a prepared speach saying..
The Police High Command wishes to inform the general public that the Force has not issued any order banning peaceful assemblies/protests anywhere in Nigeria. It notes however that against the backdrop of current security challenges in the country, coupled with a recent intelligence report of a likely infiltration and hijack of otherwise innocuous and peaceful protests by some criminal elements having links with insurgents, the Police only issued advisory notice, enjoining citizens to apply caution in the said rallies, particularly in the Federal Capital Territory and its environs.
Reminding citizens of the earlier position of the Force on peaceful rallies, which the Police High Command regards as the constitutional and democratic rights of Nigerians, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP, M D. Abubakar, CFR, NPM, mni, psc, stresses the need for the organizers of such rallies to ensure that they seek proper advice and guidance from the Police before engaging in any such exercise so as to avoid any unpleasant circumstances. The IGP calls on the general public to see the present position of the Force as a necessary sacrifice for the peace our nation needs, as security is a collective responsibility.
frank_mbaConsequently, citizens are strongly advised to reconsider their positions on the issues of rallies and protests in FCT until the existing threats are appropriately neutralized and removed from our midst by relevant security agencies.
Meanwhile, the IGP reassures citizens of the commitment of the Force to the protection of lives and property and advancing the course of democracy in Nigeria.
Reacting to the CSP Frank Mba's comments, the spokesperson of #bringbackourgirls, Mr Rotimi Olawale debunked Mr Frank's accounts of the ban and said his organization will be heading to the high court tomorrow to challenge the ban.
When asked if the Police made any arrest on the attack by some unknown hoodlums on some members of Brinbackourgirls campaign, Mr Olawale said the police were present when the attack took place and did nothing to stop it. He therefore said if Police would not stop the attackers, nobody should expect them to make any arrest.
Also speaking with Emma Agu, Mr Emman Shehu, a leading human right activist, said that Mr Frank Mba's denial should not surprise anyone. It was due to the outrage and backlash over the ban that made the Police to back-track, Dr Emma Shehu Said.