16th October, 2021
Nigerian singer and activist, Folarin ‘Falz’ Falana and Instagram comedian, Mr Macaroni, have reacted after the Landmark Event Centre, cancelled its venue for #EndSARS summit.
Mr Macaroni and Falz are among the prominent activists billed to speak at the panel holding on October 20 in Lagos.
The event, marking a year after the shooting of protesters at the Lekki toll gate, is themed the ‘Soro Soke Summit’.
Organisers of the summit had earlier secured the venue to host a memorial in commemoration of one year since the historic #EndSARS protests against police brutality and rights abuses.
The event will now be held at the Lekki Toll Plaza, where soldiers actually opened fire on protesting youths on October 20, 2020, organisers say.
The event, which was scheduled to start at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, October 20, 2021, will be focused on four topics per session.
Those to speak at the summit are Femi Falana, a rights activist; Usman Alkali Baba, the inspector-general of police (IGP); and Shina Peller, a member of the House of Representatives, among others.
Mr Macaroni, Aisha Yesufu, and Falz were known for their vocalness at the peak of the protest back in 2020.
Reacting to the news, Falz took to his Instagram and wrote; “20:10:20 [update] They killed innocent souls that were simply asking not to be killed or brutalized.
Falz in his post said innocent people were killed just because they were asking not to be killed or brutalized”. He said it has been over a year since the unfortunate incident and no one has been punished for the crime.
“A year later, no one has been punished yet for those heinous crimes. A supposed Police Commisioner “warned” against citizens exercising their fundamental human rights. Yes a Police Commisioner.
“A couple of well-meaning citizens decided to put together a summit to reflect on last year’s events & honour the lost souls. Event centre pulls out (“instructions from above”)
“As I type this, there is already HEAVY police presence at the Lekki toll gate.
“Best thing they could come up with is organizing “concerts” to try and distract us from remembering the real heroes in all of this. The people they murdered.
“What we will never do, however, is be quiet. We will NEVER EVER EVER EVER be silenced. Not today, not on the 20th, not ever,” he added.
Mr Macaroni also lamented that it’s sad that youths do not have the privilege to gather in their own country.
He also blamed entertainers who attended Lagos government events for a fee, urging them to have a rethink and put their country first.
He wrote: “I wan talk my mind as e dey pain me!! E don reach one Year wey EndSars happen. Anytime wey people say dem wan do anything wey relate with Endsars for this Lagos; na so so Police Vans, Trucks, even Armor Tanks wey dem go pack full the place. This same Lagos wey dem go dey rob people for broad daylight and nobody will come to your rescue.
“Now October 20th is almost here, we say we wan do peaceful walk to Tollgate, Dem say No, Oya make we do Summit for Landmark Event Center, in a controlled environment and discuss with ourselves, some powers above don threaten them. Those ones don talk say we no fit hold event there again. And how can anyone blame them honestly? Dem dey protect themselves, dem business and customers.
“My question is, can’t Nigerian Youths gather again to discuss the Way forward? Ok…. Na una plan to rule forever be this?? Lagos State Government has an event this evening. In fact Top Celebrities go dey there to perform.
“Lagos state dey do show days before October 20th but other Lagosians can’t gather for their own peaceful summit?? Before I talk finish now, you go hear “they will hijack your summit” So how Una dey do Una own shows and political rallies wey dem no dey Hijack am??
“For the celebrities, make we dey reason this thing ooo. Government no good but Una Dey chop Government money….I no say make anybody no chop ooo. But there are some things bigger than money!! If na Government wey dey treat the people better now, e for even better. People are suffering and these people are doing nothing about it!!
The last time wey police carry me, dem beat me and the others!! They stripped us Naked!! Dem dey ask me say “Sheyb na me wan dey disturb Governor Abi” Shey na that kain Government I go respect??
“If there will be any peaceful walk on the 20th, I’m still down ooo. But it must be all of us together. E no go bad if Una go for the Government’s show and still attend a summit or take a walk for the youths. Everybody want Coconut Water but nobody want make dem break the coconut for their head. For Nigeria, even if you let them break Coconut on your head, powers above still fit no let the others drink the coconut water. We must all come together!!!