Obafemi Hamzat, the Deputy governor of Lagos state, says he suffered harassment from special anti- robbery squad (SARS) officers four years ago.
Speaking while addressing #EndSARS protesters at Alausa, Ikeja, on Friday, Hamzat narrated how SARS operatives harassed him in the Amuwo-Odofin area of the state.
The protesters are demanding that the authorities disband SARS, a special unit of the police force that has been accused of excesses, mainly regarding youths.
The deputy governor, who appealed to the protesters to be orderly, said the action of some SARS operatives is enough to upset any citizen.
“Every decent Nigerian will be upset. This happened to me four years ago. I was going to Amuwo Odofin…they (SARS operatives) were not in uniform, they had guns, they just double crossed us and said we should get out,” Hamzat told the protesters.
“We fully understand the reasons for your anger but this demonstration must also carried out in line with the law. If we employ violence or destruction to drive home our grievances, we will also be hurting ourselves. The protest must be orderly, so that those concerned will get the salient point of the message.
“You can’t block the road, disrupt free flow of traffic and prevent other people from embarking on their lawful duties, especially the emergency responders. As citizens, it is within your rights to express your grievances but let us exercise caution and eschew violence. The authorities have heard your voice and I hope we all leave the roads with the understanding that drastic changes will be effected.”