Chibok girls: Police have not banned protests – PRO

By Chizoba Ogbeche

The Nigeria Police High Command has said that the Force did not issue any order banning peaceful assemblies, protests anywhere in the country.
The Force stated this via a statement issued yesterday in Abuja by its Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Mr Frank E. Mba, against the backdrop of the reported ban of protests over the abduction of Chibok girls by the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Police Command.
The statement said: “Against the backdrop of current security challenges in the country, coupled with a recent intelligence report of a likely infiltration and hijack of otherwise innocuous and peaceful protests by some criminal elements having links with insurgents, the Police only issued advisory notice, enjoining citizens to apply caution in the said rallies, particularly in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and its environs.”

It reminded “citizens of the earlier position of the Force on peaceful rallies, which the Police High Command regards as the constitutional and democratic rights of Nigerians, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP, M D. Abubakar,” stressing the need for the organisers of “such rallies to ensure that they seek proper advice and guidance from the Police before engaging in any such exercise so as to avoid any unpleasant circumstances.”
It called on the general public to see the present position of the Force “as a necessary sacrifice for the peace our nation needs, as security is a collective responsibility.”
“Consequently, citizens are strongly advised to reconsider their positions on the issues of rallies and protests in FCT until the existing threats are appropriately neutralised and removed from our midst by relevant security agencies.”