Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has said that the #EndSARS protests and looting of public and private warehouses are one of the effects of the COVID-19 lockdown in Nigeria.
Governor Bello said this when he appeared on Channels TV Sunrise Daily monitored by Daily Trust.
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“These are one of the effects of this so-called COVID-19. Let’s not just gloss over it or be reacting on the impulse of the moment,” he said.
He said when COVID-19, which he described as ‘glorified malaria’ was imported into the country, he recalled cautioning and warning that accepting the imported alien disease would have huge consequences in the long run, but people never listened to his advice.
The protests would not have happened, the Governor said, if Nigeria had treated COVID-19 with the same sincerity as Ebola.
The Governor also said the protest has taken a political dimension.
“What is happening today, the so-called EndSARS is politically motivated. Whether anybody says it or not, I am saying it once again,” he said.
He further justified his position by saying that the protesters continued the protests even when the Federal Government accepted their five-point demands.
Bello said the EndSARS protests, which started as a genuine agitation, have now been hijacked by hoodlums and are taking a political dimension.
He said even though Kogi had no COVID-19, the state was economically affected.
“So we had to get the support of the Federal Government. We distributed palliatives to 20 out of 21 local governments in Kogi State.
The palliative distribution for Lokoja local government was on until imported hoodlums tried to interfere,” he said.
He also said the maladministration of the past governments is the cause of poverty the country is witnessing today.
However, he said looting is not a result of poverty as it has also been experienced even in wealthy countries like the United States of America during the Black lives matter protest.