Washington DC- On Sunday, October 18th , Nigerian young professionals in the diaspora will be gathering in front of the Nigerian Embassy in DC to protest in solidarity with those at home fighting against police brutality.
Social media has been very instrumental to bringing visibility to the issue and engaging Nigerians in the diaspora. This has helped the cause gain international recognition. Protests have been held in London, Canada, Paris, Atlanta, NewYork and several other cities. The diaspora has been able to help bring visibility to the issue, put pressure on the Nigerian Government and offer solidarity to the protestors on the ground.
Largely peaceful protests led by the Nigerian youth have won the backing of celebrities and business leaders. Most recently, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted his support on Wednesday, encouraging people to donate to the protests via bitcoin and verified the twitter handles of some of the leaders of the movement in Nigeria such as leading woman FK Abudu and others.
Like the rest of the diaspora, In Washington DC, highly respected young professionals have come together to organize a protest at the Nigeria embassy on Sunday , October 18th. The protest is organized by media/ News personality Raro Lae who is on Instagram as @rarolae, Nonye (@nonyedambizness) , entertainment artist Funsho (@funshomusic) and more.
The background of the ongoing protest in Nigeria started with a national outcry to end the special unit force within the Nigerian police known as Special Anti-Robbery Squad, or SARS, which has been accused of torture, extortion and extrajudicial killings especially young people.
The government agreed to disband the unit and immediately unveiled a new police unit to replace the notorious SARS agency. According to BBC, the head of the police Mohammed Adamu announced that the new unit known as Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team will fill the gaps left from the dissolution of SARS, he said. Many are using the hashtag #EndSwat on Twitter to oppose the new unit. They see the changes as not enough to reform the police.
Nigerians remain outraged by the unveiling of this new police unit to replace a notorious agency and as a result the youth-led protests continue all over the country and also the diaspora.
The protest is in solidarity with the Nationwide youth led protests that have rocked Nigeria for over ten consecutive days as thousands of Nigerians continue to March peacefully for justice and an end to police brutality. With over 100K people gathering in 100 cities around the world, this is a youth-led movement for a ‘New Nigeria’.
Date: October 18th 2020
Time: 12PM EST
Safety Measures: Snacks and water will be distributed at various point near the location. Bring your face mask and hand sanitizers.
For more information , send a message on Instagram to @rarolae, @funshomusic and @nonyedambizness.
This protest is in clear alignment and same demands with the 5 for 5 demands.
Looking to be a part of the protest, you can share on social media using this caption
Washington DC, It has become very clear that the lives of innocent citizens in Nigeria, have little to no value to the Nigerian government, police and military. Despite the IG of Police’s announcement that the SARS unit has been dissolved, the murdering of innocent citizens, firing on peaceful protesters with live ammunition, tear gas and fire hoses, illegal detention and torturing of peaceful protesters has continued. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. #SARSMUSTEND. #WashingtonDC on Sunday, October 18,2020 at 12PM, we protest and we march. We will no longer watch our sisters and brothers suffer at the hands of the Nigerian Police. We have no leader, we are all in this together! Come and make your voices be heard!!! #sarsmustgo #endpolicebrutality #sarsmustendnow #blacklivesmatter”