SPN Condemns the Brutal Repression of “Revolution Now” Protest and Demand the Immediate and Unconditional Release of Protesters in Detention
We Stand for a Socialist Revolution!
The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) sternly condemns the attacks on the democratic rights of the “Revolution Now” protesters by the security operatives on Wednesday, August 5, 2020. The protest was organised by activists under the aegis of Coalition for Revolution (CORE). In some of the places where the protest was held, it was hallmarked by arrest, brutal torture and barbaric disruption by the Police and DSS. We hereby demand the immediate and unconditional release of those arrested and still being detained by the police and DSS. As we predicted, the Buhari regime is using the COVID-19 pandemic and physical distancing rules to repress the right to protest. This was shown by the statement of the FCT Commissioner of Police who claimed that the protesters were arrested not because of their protest but because of violation of the COVID-19 guidelines which forbids mass gathering. This is a cynical attempt to attack the right to protest and we reject it.
We recall that a similar protest same date last year and organised by the same group was brutally repressed by the police and DSS leading to the detention of many activists. Indeed, Omoyele Sowore, publisher of Sahara Reporters and the Convener of “Revolution Now”, has not fully regained his freedom following his detention as a result of that protest. The court ruling that ordered his release from the detention also barred him from leaving FCT Abuja and joining any protest.
The protest today was met, just like the previous one, with bestial attacks from security operatives. In Lagos, over 20 protesters were arrested, in Osun state about 8 protesters were arrested and over 60 were arrested in Abuja.
The Buhari/APC and the entire capitalist ruling class have clearly displayed their inability to change the inimical economic reality of the working masses. Today, all indices that could be used to measure development are in the negative. The current pandemic has further made the situation worse. Out of attempts to place the blame of the fallouts from the pandemic on the poor masses, many jobs have been lost and many persons have been condemned to penury.
However, this attack against protesters demonstrates how weak and scared the Buhari government is of the rise of the masses to fight back through political action especially given its monumental failure and its unflinching capitalist attacks being unleashed on the masses such as fuel price hike, tax increases, etc.
We charge the leadership of the labour movement to wake up to their responsibility and rise to condemn this tragic disregard for democratic rights of people. We also demand that trade unions, socialist and pro-masses organisations must begin to mobilise mass of working people into a mass movement to fight against attacks on their living condition and struggle for political power to build a better society.
We in the Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) strongly hold that the reason for the failure of successive governments in Nigeria and the mass misery bedeviling Nigerian masses despite the enormous human and material resources of the country is the capitalist system. On the basis of the contradiction of capitalism, which means wealth for the rich few and penury for the majority, poverty and corruption are inevitable. This is why any movement to end poverty or corruption must be armed with programmes that are geared towards ending the iniquitous system of capitalism and establishing a socialist society.
Abiodun Bamigboye Chinedu Bosah
Acting National Chairperson National Secretary