Members of the Unions started converging at the popular Berger roundabout at about 7 am and proceeded to the National Assembly through Zone 4 within the Wuse District. The protesters led by their leaders passed through the Wuse 2 district through Abia House in Maitama District before they were stopped by the heavy presence of security operatives.
The protesters walked the entire 15 kilometers from the starting point to the National Assembly chanting anti government songs, calling on the Federal Government to consider the plight of suffering Nigerians.
The protesters also kicked against on going attempts to emasculate the Nigerian people through constitutional amendment and claimed that powerful and the rich who have access to the corridors of power, prefer to tinker with the aspects of the constitution that suits them.
They claimed that the recent public hearing by the Senate Committee on Privatization confirmed the NLC’s insistence over the years that the scheme was a scam to fleece the country.
“It is not surprising that there have been desperate attempts to muzzle the Committee and kill the Senate report. We advise against such brazen acts. Those who committed crimes against the Nigerian people in the name of privatization must be brought to justice and ill gotten wealth recovered and returned as a common patrimony” declares the Labour Mobilizing Committee.
The Unions called on the arrest and prosecution former Heads of State, Gen Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida, Gen Abdulsalami Abubakar as well as former President Olusegun Obasanjo and their cronies indicted by the various probe panels for economic crimes and sabotage against Nigeria and Nigerians.
They also demanded that all privatized but failing companies be brought under democratic control of workers and consumers.
Attempts by the heavily armed detachment of security personnel to restrain the protesters from entering the National Assembly complex failed as they were overwhelmed by the huge number of protesters who were in their thousands.
They soon gained access to the stretch of the dual carriage way leading to the main gate of the complex and were met very close to the NASS main entrance by the Deputy Speaker, Emeka Ihediora who attempted to receive the protesters message at the entrance. His attempts were futile as the protesters shouted him down and insisted on entering the premises of the NASS complex. He was forced to retrace his steps back into the safety of the cordoned off entrance.
—Nnamdi Felix / Abuja