This morning marked the 4th day of Abuja’s Eagle Square Occupation by members of the Occupy Movement in Nigeria. They have been peaceful all along and have kept their focus on peaceful occupation. Sadly though, the Nigerian security operatives at about 3am today attacked this peaceful, harmless Nigerians for no just cause save for the fact that they have the guts to voice their disagreement with a government decision.
This has been the trend over the course of the year as police and other security operatives attack and look to scare peaceful protesters away. Kano protesters were attacked and hounded, protesters in Abuja were last Monday hounded, a protester was killed in Ilorin, Kwara State, another to felled by police bullets in Gusau while at least two deaths have been reported elsewhere amongst scores of injured people.
If peaceful protesters are made to go through this sort of lawlessness and injustice by the Nigerian police, what will happen if they have to deal with an aggressive group of protesters? Peaceful protesters eventually become aggressive once they know that being peaceful is being seen as docility.
These are crimes against humanity and just as Hosni Mubarak faces his crimes of killing protesters in his country, we believe some day will come when men of equal stature will be made to face the law.