December 4, 2020

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Listen to the youth, make changes, CAN urges Nigerian govt

3 min read

The President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Samson Ayokunle, has urged the federal government to urgently consider meeting the demands of the youth who engaged in protests against police brutality in the country recently.

The cleric noted that the youth are crying out and need to be attended to.

Mr Ayokunle also encouraged Nigerians, particularly the youth, not to despair.

He said that the federal government should know that the youth are formidable and therefore should be catered for.

The #EndSARS began as a peaceful protest against police high-handedness and other rights abuses until it was hijacked by hoodlums which resulted in looting and burning of properties belonging to the government and some private citizens.

Several persons, including police personnel, lost their lives during the crisis. Amnesty International put the number of those who died in the crisis at 56.

With the return of calm to the streets and some states counting losses, panels of inquiry are currently sitting to receive complaints of police brutality.

The government has also disbanded the notorious police unit, SARS, and promised police reforms, two of the major demands of the protesters. The government has, however, continued to clampdown on some of the protesters including by suspending their bank accounts, arbitrary arrests, and barring some from travels.

However, Mr Ayokunle, who spoke in Akure, the Ondo State capital at the consecration ceremony of James Owoyemi as the President of the United Apostolic Church of Christ (U.A.C.C) worldwide, on Sunday, also appealed to the youth to give the federal government time to plan.

According to him, the youth of the country had woken up to show to ”our leaders that they are not an appendage to society.

“I want the government not to trivialize the voice of the youth but to ensure and work assiduously and make concrete plans for them in the developmental programme of the country especially in creating an enabling environment for employment for the youths,” the CAN President said.

“With the way they have spoken, I also want to advise the youth to be patient because Rome was not built in a day.

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“They also need to allow the government to have space to rejig things and make plans for them.”

He further encouraged Nigerians to be steadfast in their prayers for a better country.

“If any year is good we need to praise him and if otherwise, we need to talk to him the more on the need to make the year better for us,” said Mr Ayokunle.

“The situation of the country has shown to us that power belongs to God and not to us. Any good we received is not because we merit it. It is because of His grace.

“We need need to be humble in our dealings with the Almighty. Appreciate him for the little we have so that he can open the doors for the plenty.”

Earlier, the newly consecrated president, Mr Owoyemi, appealed to the government to prioritise the welfare of the youth of the country.

“The youth of the country has spoken. Let the government listen and rise to its responsibility. What we are expecting after the protest is a positive change in the country.”

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