The Minister of Defense, Gen. Bashir Salihi Magashi, has warned that the federal government will not sit by and watch miscreants dictate how Nigeria will be governed.
The Minister, who spoke to journalists in Kano, weekend, said, “End SARS issue, if you recall, the Minister of Information has briefed this nation and alerted that something like this is coming, and we know we are always prepared. This is our job to ensure internal security.”
The Minister said, “over 60 per cent of the protesters were miscreants, who don’t even know why they are there, some are rogues, while some are there to steal.
“That is why we must plan for it. We don’t want to be taken by surprise.
” If End SARS is to take place today, we will ensure that we have peaceful counter plans that we will put in place to ensure that mistakes are not made in protecting the people.”
He added, “You know the composition of the End SARS crowd, Over 60 per cent of them are people who don’t even know why they are there, they just come to take part, some of them are rogues, some are there to steal, they want to do whatever they think is right, but we cannot just sit and watch”.
Gen. Magashi said there are some genuine ones among them and they are actually very few.
“The genuine ones, we want to get them enlightened, that they should stop doing things that will create collateral damage for the country. We need people who will seat down and use their brain. Sit down with the government and see what we can do for them.
“We ask them what are your problems? In the initial one, when they said this is their problem, even Mr. President spoke. They gave 5-point demands; and they were attended to. But if some people want the country to be governed the way they want, we are not elected to serve a particular people. We were elected to serve this country.
“Whoever is involved in this End SARS issue, the military and the government will not allow it to happen. But we will be as good as any other citizen to protect this country.”
He continued, “We are not going to be harsh on anybody. We will maintain the law and peace to the best of our ability. We can use force when it is required; when you use force, we don’t say you will go and start killing people, we can use minimum force commiserate with what is seen on the ground. And that is where some people are getting it wrong.”
“We cannot sit down and then you shoot at somebody and we allow you to go because somebody thinks that you are one that can kill and go away. Please give us time, in this country, we are in a state where we want everybody to look up and see what he can do for this country, not what the country can do for you.”