Banky W

By Jennifer Okundia

Musician and Nigerian Politician, Banky W has come out on social media, to announce a nationwide protest, for which he revealed a dress code and venue.

Displeased followers, took to his timeline to express their dissatisfaction at the singer’s conditions for a protest, stating that a green and white dress code is unacceptable as it isn’t a music concert.

Some fans also warned other protesters not to attend Banky’s Muri Okunola park protest in Lagos, as it would draw attention for them to be arrested, while also stating that the songwriter was working in conjunction with the state.

Banky has officially released a statement to counter these claims, and succumbed to no dress code instead:

“States have other agencies.. Lagos has the Safety Commission, Neighborhood Watch and LASTMA. Why can’t they be activated? Or Police with Rubber bullets?! How many young people will they kill? What a terrible, terrible tragedy. #ReformThePoliceNG #SARSMUSTEND #5for5

”Every Governor in the Country should ask their Commissioners of Police to tell all officers stand down. They’re the ones shooting and killing innocent people. Stray bullets taking lives. Why bring live rounds to a peaceful protest?!?! Why?!?!?!?!?!

”Tomorrow is a Peaceful March. We meet at 9am at Muri Okunola and walk together to Marina. Lagos State Govt has committed to support our right to walk peacefully. LASTMA and Neighborhood watch will be there as well for traffic control. We will be organized and effective #5for5

”The dress code suggestion was clearly a terrible idea. Some are also worried about the park. The point was to gather and move as one. Not stay there. The point is to make our demands for police reform known and get them to take steps.

”There is no leader here pls. Gather wherever, protest however. I just want to see actual REFORM started. All Protestors freed, justice for victims, compensation for their families, and corrupt officers brought to Justice. That’s why I’m here. To each his own. Peace.

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“There is no leader here. We are all just trying to play our part. Everyone must do as they see best. I will be marching tomorrow with anyone else who wants to present our demands to the Police and the Govt. We will also focus on sustaining pressure to free ALL Protesters.”

Nigerian singer Falz also said: “Muri Okunola is just our meeting point for tomorrow’s march. We are marching peacefully to the office of the AIG in Onikan. Also ignore the dress code please, Thanks Folded hands #5for5 #EndPoliceBrutality #SARSMUSTEND

Here’s what Twitter users said:

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See Banky’s reply here:

He earlier declared that a protest would be holding in Lagos, on his timeline.

“On Tuesday, Oct 13th from 9am, there will be a coordinated, simultaneous Nationwide Peaceful March to present our response to the President of Nigeria, via all the Governors and Police Leaders in every State.
We encourage all concerned citizens to come out and join us as we peacefully march to their offices.
We also would like to inform all Security Agents in advance so that they do not infringe upon our Constitutional right to peacefully gather, march and make our requests clear. We call on the IGP, in particular, to communicate this clearly.
We are united in our resolve to play our part in bringing about the reforms our country desperately needs. The routes for the Marches in different states will be communicated via the hashtag #5for5 on social media.

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#SARSmustEnd #EndPoliceBrutality #ReformThePolice #weMove”

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These were some of the points I tried to make during the protests. Ending SARS was an absolutely necessary first step, but it was just the first step. Now we need to articulate the reforms we need, and hold them accountable to it. We need to sustain the energy. The first leg is over but the marathon has just begun. Video credit: @visualsbyuche

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This is Non-negotiable. The Nigerian Government MUST: – #EndSARS – Any officer caught extorting/assaulting citizens must be suspended without pay, investigated and prosecuted. – Police MUST pay damages to victims and their families directly from their budget. We have lost count of how many of their victims we have had to raise money for. – #EndSARSnow

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