Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau, has imposed a 24-hour curfew in Jos North and Jos South Local Government Areas, from 8 p.m. on Tuesday Lalong gave the order while briefing newsmen on Tuesday at the Government House In Jos.
“It is rather unfortunate that in the past few days , the #EndSARS protest which began peacefully have gradually degenerated to the situation where hoodlums have attacked and molested innocent citizens who are going about their normal businesses “This development took a new turn on Tuesday, Oct. 20, when the protest led to destruction of properties, cars and looting of business premises along Ahmadu Bello way, as well as the burning of a place of worship, on the Gyero road Bukuru, In addition, three deaths have been recorded,” he said.
He said he summoned an emergency Security Council Meeting to evaluate the situation in order to take necessary action to forestall further escalation, saying the curfew was necessary to achieve that.
“Furthermore, all public and private businesses are to shutdown activities immediately while parents are strongly advised to rein in their children, youth and wards to forestall further breakdown of law and order.
“Only those on essential services will be allowed to move around to their duty posts, ” he said.
He said security agencies have been directed to ensure that the curfew was enforced, saying defaulters would be arrested and prosecuted. He urged the protesters to pursue the path of constructive engagement and dialogue since the Government has started implementing their demands.
“Only yesterday, I inaugurated the Judicial Panel of Inquiry on police brutality and other related extra-judicial killings in Plateau State, headed by Justice Philomena Lot, a retired Judge of the High Court of Plateau State.
“This was also followed by strategic engagement with different groups and organisations,” he said.
The governor said as the panel prepares to commence its sitting, all those who have complaints against members of the disbanded SARS and other police units should take their complaints to the panel for necessary action.
“We will do everything possible to implement the outcome of the panel’s recommendation as it applies to its jurisdiction.
“We call for understanding and unity from Nigerians, to enable the country to overcome the current challenge “We have to stand together and avoid any act that could jeopardize our collective existence and the future of our children.
“As your Governor, my administration shall continue to support the agitation for a holistic reform of the policing architecture in our country as well as advocate for further reforms towards the rapid implementation of community policing which I have strongly canvassed for.
“Plateau cannot afford to slide back to the days of crisis which we have substantially put behind us thanks to the collective efforts of all citizens, security agencies, and relevant stakeholders,” he said.