Fashola Condemns Deployment Of Soldiers In Lagos

Lagosians woke up this morning to find the whole state occupied by a large number of soldiers under the orders of President Goodluck Jonathan, The Governor of Lagos state, Babatunde Fashola condemned this development in the speech reproduced below:

Dear Lagosians: For the past few days, I have monitored the developments related to the public protest against the increase in the pump price of petrol.

During that period, I have at the invitation of my colleagues in the Governor’s Forum responded to an invitation from the Presidency.
My role since last Monday till date has been to find a ground of compromise that stabilizes the polity, protects our democracy and prevent any loss of lives.

Inspite of these efforts, we were not wholly successful in preventing the loss of the life of a young Nigerian, Ademola Aderinto who was sadly shot.

I am truly saddened by that ugly development. While I condole with his family, I pledge the commitment of our Government to bring the alleged perpetrator to justice.

I have decided to address you today in view of the very disquieting developments that occurred overnight especially the deployment of soldiers across Lagos.

I have the highest respect for members of our military, especially because they have made a contract with all of us that they will willingly lay down their lives whenever it becomes necessary to do so, in order to protect us.

This covenant is instructive, because soldiers did not sign up to stop us from expressing our grievance about things that we are displeased about.
It is not disputable that the citizens who have gathered in several parts of Lagos like Falomo, Ikorodu and Ojota to mention a few have largely conducted themselves peacefully, singing and dancing while they expressed their displeasure at the way that we have taken decisions that affect them.

That in my view should not offend those of us in Government. The majority of these people who represent diverse interests have not broken any law. If they have, it is my opinion that in a constitutional democracy, it is the police that has the responsibility for restoring law and order if civil protests threatens the breach of the peace.

This is not justification for sending out soldiers to a gathering of unarmed citizens. Every one of us, or at least majority of us who hold public office danced and sang before these same people when we were seeking their votes.

Why should we feel irritated when they sing and dance in protest against what we have done?
For me this is not a matter for the military. The sooner we rethink and rescind this decision the better and stronger our democracy will be.

If anything, this is a most welcome transformation of our democracy in the sense that it provokes a discussion of economic policies and this inevitably may result in political debate.

I therefore urge the reconsideration of the decision to deploy soldiers and implore the President and Commander-in-Chief to direct their withdrawal from our streets, I must also emphasize that the rights of free speech and protest is not absolute. They impose the duty not to break the law, breach the peace, endanger human life or destroy property whether public or private.

They also impose the duty to respect the rights of others not to support our protest and indeed to support what we oppose. At the end of the day, it is a contest of ideas in which the most persuasive will get the endorsement of the majority of the people we serve.

I am convinced that our democracy is mature enough to accommodate this. We must do our best to ensure that it does.

God bless you all.
Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN
Governor of Lagos State

11 Comments

  • Sir BRF,After going through speech sir, all i could think of is that you should carry go. The sky is your limit. Mark my words, You ar e going places. My name? Emmanuel,meaning God with us. God is with you sir. God Bless Lasgidi,God Bless BRF,God Bless Nigeria! EKO O NI BAJE OOOO

  • BRJ you have proved beyond doubt that you are a God fearing, articulate, and a servant of the most high in your style of leadership. A true leader should be moved by the pain, suffering and affliction of his subject. God will definitely reward your faithfulness with promotion

  • BRF is simply the best Gov not only in 2011 but the overall best leader in the history of Nigeria. Jonathan who is a direct opposite of Baba should go to our Gov and learn his leadership qualities. I love u so much BABA. God Bless you Sir. Pls Sir, plan to go for presidency cos that’s where you belong

  • BRF you’re just too much, i know GEJ wants to know if you’re going react, and you’ve just acted in the right way,at the right time,and most expecially for the right pple which GEJ lack in his own decision making.BRT shud hv been the president.

  • I continue 2 maintain my stands dat Goodluck jonathan is a confuse man n has notin 2 offer we d masses of ds country…i hope he does nt brng shame 2 we d naijadelta pple

  • lets hope this isn’t another smoke screen though we, relish the complement its imperative Nigeria needs to insure these oil tycoons make due on their promises while on Nigerian soil. Furthermore if this backlash of increasing oil prices is determined by, the presidential election in the US to smear the first African / American president is imminent then, its time to stand behind the USA president Barack Obama to regulate Nigerian oil against the oil companies, looking to smear his presidency. In the USA, the “Do Nothing Congress” made of republican leaders are very discriminative against their own president because he is Black and, perhaps a strong Nigerian president should look at the history of, what the Arabs did to control their oil back in 1940’s with the Americans. Hence the reason they Arabs have control over their oil, the land and, pricing.

    Why can’t we propose the same for Nigeria? These greedy corporations should step aside and control what’s in their own interest on their own soil and not Nigeria. These foreign corporations find it easy to control whats benefiting themselves and not to people around the world. Monopolizing their control should be a crime on Nigerian soil, we the people should have total control which is where a strong Nigerian government is to regain power and control but, by the people and not the greed of government corruption.

    Our president should be taking the revenue’s created from Nigerian oil, and put back towards the people including in the outer communities and not discriminate by, keeping the poor poorer but, by providing the substance of ALL Nigerians equally!

    Oil companies surrounding the African nations should provide Nigeria with the proper remedy so we’re not under their greedy warranting their need to create issue’s abroad for, we should sustain our own economic depression which follows Nigerian government corruption and, to eliminate this idiotic tactic but, not by using the “God” as a means to manipulate others for, God will see through your own ignorance and punish you and your family for the Lies the people of Nigeria has suffered.

    The people has spoken, the corruption must end sometime soon or there won’t be a Nigeria to call our own. Badluck Jonathan, its time for you to step aside or the people will bring in someone else who’s strong, willing to eliiminate government corruption, and start caring for the people in the outer communities which, is where Nigeria suffers the most.

    Our Nigerian president should find the remedy to eliminate government spending in the wrong places and look towards the development by, creating the subsidies towards the people and not the greedy boys club for, each time a corrupt official steals from the people, it hurts Nigeria. We are in desperate need to insure the correct democracy of balance is used by all of Nigeria or, other groups like Boko Haram will develop. Our president should think smartly and not present himself as an idiot trying to regain power for his pockets and the pockets of the remaining and corrupt government officials. Its time for the people of Nigeria and not just the wealthy to do but, for the poor, we need to reassess what Badluck Jonathan has done for All the people of Nigeria for, without the people Jonathan has no power and perhaps, he and his family should live like those poor Nigerians in the outer communities see, how he likes being a victim of his own idiotic control.

  • Mr.Fashola,you can’t deceive every body at all times.You have derail from what i think you use to be.Can you swear by your religion that you are not informed by the soldiers taking over the freedom pack?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *