SPN CONDEMNS KILLINGS OF GEORGE FLOYD AND TINA EZEKWE
SPN SUPPORTS THE MASS PROTEST IN US AND ACROSS THE WORLD
SPN DEMANDS AN END TO POLICE BRUTALITY, RACIAL VIOLENCE AND ALL FORMS OF OPPRESSION
The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) condemns the brutal killing of George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man by Minneapolis Police officers on May 25, 2020, after he was arrested for allegedly buying cigarettes with a counterfeit $20 bill. After he was arrested and handcuffed by four officers, three of the officers pinned him down despite the fact that Floyd did not display any resistance and was unarmed. Continuing the harassment, Derek Chauvin, one of the police officers had his neck pinned to the ground for about 9 minutes until he died despite repeatedly stating, “I cannot breathe”.
In a similar vein, we also condemn the incessant police brutality and killings in Nigeria especially the recent murder of Tina Ezekwe, a 17-year-old girl, by police operatives in Lagos.
We therefore demand justice for George Floyd and Tina Ezekwe with the prosecution of the killer police officer and an end to racial discrimination and police brutality.
After the video of Floyd’s gruesome murder was posted on the internet, protests have erupted in more than 75 cities in the US and several others across the world.
This killing is not just an isolated case of police brutality, it is part of systemic harassment of blacks, coloured people and the poor in general in the United States. Therefore, the killing of Floyd is not unconnected to his being racially profiled by the white police officer, something which has become recurring in the United States but in recent years accentuated by President Donald Trump who plays a racial card in order to consolidate its base among conservative white people. However, the protests in the US and globally against the killing have drawn people from different colours showing their indignation. This shows unity and solidarity among ordinary people but for capitalist elite which tend to divide the ordinary people along racial and ethnic lines in order to perpetuate their rule and exploitation of society.
Therefore, racial killing just like brutality by the police, who are an instrument of state repression, are together with social injustice growing inequality, poverty, joblessness ingrained features of the exploitative capitalist system. George Floyd is one of the millions of Americans who have lost their jobs recently following the economic crisis of capitalism worsened by the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite the abundant human and natural resources at the disposal of the capitalist system, it alienates the working masses and the poor and therefore plunges the vast majority into a world of uncertainty and rat race. This is the foundation upon which police brutality and repression rest.
The killing of George Floyd is similar to the police murder of Tina Ezekwe in Nigeria and the avoidable deaths of thousands of people across the world including Nigeria as a result police brutality, lack of healthcare, housing and other basic needs.
The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) supports the protest and urges working class people in Nigeria, the US and globally to as they call for social justice, end to police brutality and racial discrimination, to also demand that police should be democratically controlled by workers and community people. However, to achieve social justice and equality, end class oppression and exploitation and thus attain an egalitarian society, capitalism has to be defeated. So, the working masses must build their class-based political party, armed with a socialist programme to challenge and defeat the capitalist political parties in Nigeria, the US and across the world.
Acting National Chairperson