Pastor Tunde Bakare, the Serving Overseer, Citadel Global Community Church, formerly known as Latter Rain Assembly, has cautioned the Federal Government against freezing of accounts and arrest of promoters of the #EndSARS protests.
In his state of the nation address at his church in Oregun area of Lagos on Sunday, Bakare who described the action by the government as regressive, warned that such intimidation could trigger another protest across the country.
“Truth be told, this season of our national life requires deep humility, sobriety and deliberate thinking through, both by the government and the governed, in order to ensure that our plans, policies and actions are weighed before they are implemented to avert the re-occurrence of our most recent crisis. In light of the foregoing, some of the actions recently taken by the government on the heels of the #EndSARS protests may need to be reversed sooner rather than later in our collective best interest so that they do not trigger further protests,” he said.
“Among such policy actions is the freezing of the accounts of young Nigerians who reportedly sponsored the protests. While I admit that, under our extant laws, banks may freeze an account upon an ex parte order granted to a law enforcement agency by a court of competent jurisdiction for the purpose of investigation, these provisions of our law should not be used to intimidate Nigerian youths simply because they engaged in and promoted protests against the inactions of government. In addition, targeting and arresting citizens on trumped-up charges, deploying court probes as a tool of intimidation, and generally eroding our fragile peace, are deeply worrisome signs of regression.”
The Save Nigeria Group (SNG) convener also kicked against the planned regulation of the social media to silence the people, adding that anyone who sought political relevance in the country should not move against the youth, who possessed power of the social media.
“Any political group that takes the social media-savvy Nigerian youths for granted does so at its own risk or peril. This is why I strongly advise the power blocs, including the South-West governors who are calling for stricter regulation of social media, to desist from doing so,” he said.