Security personnel disallow protest against NIS recruitment
Security personnel on Wednesday disallowed a protest organised by civil society groups against the botched March 15 recruitment conducted by the Nigeria Immigration Service in which over 20 applicants died across the country.
The protesters, who gathered at the Garki Area 1 overhead bridge, met stiff resistance from a combined team of security personnel, who barred them from having access to the Ministry of Interior.
The armed personnel comprised the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, the Federal Road Safety Commission, the Nigeria Police and Vehicle Inspection Officers.
Explaining the reason for preventing the protest, a Civil Defence Corps official, who pleaded anonymity, said the group had not obtained permission from the police before embarking on the protest.
He said: “We are security men and our duty is to secure the lives of citizens in the country.
“If there is going to be a protest, there must be a letter informing us that this particular set of people will be embarking on a protest.
“If anything happens here while we are on duty, we will be held responsible and we do not know the reason for this gathering here today.”
Some of the protesters were arrested.
They included Japheth Omojuwa, Uche Briggs, Azeenar Mohammad, Tosin Adex, Ikelolu Senbanjo.
The groups, including the Nigerian Patriots, Shape Africa and students, said the protest was against the the death of innocent unemployed Nigerians during the exercise.
They called on President Goodluck Jonathan to ensure that the N1,000 paid by each applicant for the recruitment form was refunded as directed by government.
Adeyemi Ayodeji, the Coordinator of the Nigeria Patriots, said: “We are standing on the side of the youth, particularly those who died and those who returned unemployed to their villages.
“We are also fighting the cause of those who lost their money in the scam organised by the Ministry of Interior.”
Over 20 applicants died while scores were injured in a stampede on March 15 during the recruitment in parts of the country.