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June 12 Showdown: DSS, Civil Society on Collision Course Over Planned Protests

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The Department of State Services (DSS) has issued a public alert regarding planned protests by certain individuals and groups set to take place on June 12, 2024.

These protests, coinciding with the Democracy Day celebrations, are suspected to have “sinister objectives,” according to the DSS.

The DSS advisory came on the heels of plans by civil society groups to hold protests nationwide today.

In a statement released today, Dr. Peter Afunanya, Director of PR & Strategic Communications for the DSS, emphasized that while the right to assemble and express oneself is fundamental, it should not compromise public safety or national security.

Photograph: Omoyele Sowore/X.com

“The determination by some non-state actors to incite mass disaffection through demonstrations that may turn violent will not be tolerated,” Afunanya stated.

The DSS stressed the importance of maintaining peace, highlighting that violent protests contradict the Federal Government’s efforts to address grievances amicably, including issues like the minimum wage.

“Citizens are called upon to resist any persuasions to be lawless or cause disorder and anarchy in the nation,” Afunanya added.

Reaffirming its commitment to national security, the DSS assured the public of its readiness to counter any actions aimed at disrupting peace.

“The DSS will sustain collaboration with all relevant stakeholders, including sister security agencies, to maintain the peace and protect lives and property across the nation,” Afunanya noted, urging law-abiding citizens to continue their daily activities without fear.

Meanwhile, popular activist Omoyele Sowore has called on Nigerians to join a nationwide protest against the Bola Tinubu administration today.

The protests, organized by the Take It Back (TIB) movement, will coincide with the Democracy Day celebrations.

Sowore, using his X (formerly Twitter) account, urged Nigerians to rise against what he describes as the detrimental impact of Tinubu’s regime on the country.

“The power of the people is much stronger than the people in power,” Sowore quoted, attributing the sentiment to Wael Ghonim, a prominent figure in the Arab Spring.

In his post, Sowore stated, “Nigerians across the nation and the globe are invited to join the nationwide protest against the Tinubu regime tomorrow, which will be organized by the @TIBmovement #RevolutionNow.

“The regime of Bola Tinubu has ruined the Nigerian economy and brought unprecedented hardship against the Nigerian populace.”

The protests are planned to take place in various parts of the country, with specific venues and times announced for different locations.

In Abuja, activists and supporters are expected to gather at designated spots to voice their discontent.

The Nigerian government has designated June 12 as Democracy Day to honour the historic 1993 presidential election, initially celebrated for the victory of the late MKO Abiola.

This commemoration was shifted from May 29 to June 12 by former President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration.

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