Nigeria’s former leaders including Olusegun Obasanjo and Yakubu Gowon applauded President Muhammadu Buhari’s broadcast on Thursday as “detailed and soothing to the country,” the Presidency has said.
Buhari on Friday held a virtual meeting with the former leaders which also included Ibrahim Babangida, Ernest Shonekan, Abulsalami Abubakar and Goodluck Jonathan.
According to a statement by Buhari’s spokesman Femi Adesina, each of the former leaders commended Buhari for steps taken so far to restore calm and order to the country following the crisis which followed the #EndSARS protest.
Buhari claimed that his administration’s decision to accept the demands by youths who protested against the disbanded Special Anti- Robbery Squad of the Nigeria Police Force emboldened them to become violent.
Adesina quoted the president as saying, “We accepted all the demands and proceeded immediately to scrap SARS and started the process of addressing the other demands.
“Unfortunately, the protesters refused to call off the protest and engage the government to address their grievances.
“Instead, they became emboldened and gradually turned violent.”
Adesina said the president reiterated his pledge to Nigerians in his nationwide broadcast that “we will continue to improve good governance through our democratic process including through sustained engagement.
“We shall also continue to ensure that liberty and freedom, as well as the fundamental rights of all citizens are protected. Here, I want to also reaffirm our commitment to preserving the unity of this country.”
Adesina further said Buhari told his predecessors that his administration would not fold its arms and allow miscreants and criminals continue to perpetrate acts of hooliganism in the country.