The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has advised #EndSARS protesters to seize this moment to enter into a negotiation with the Government in reciprocation of President Muhammadu Buhari’s continuous communication and sincere engagement with them since the beginning of their protest.

In a statement signed by Niyi Akinsiju, the group’s Chairman, and Cassidy Madueke, its Secretary, the group called for the protesters to shift their strategy from street demonstrations, listen to the plea of the President, get their leadership to work hand-in-hand with the Government to achieve the laudable objectives for Youths President Buhari has set out for the country.

The BMO recalled that no President in Nigeria’s recent history has done more to empower Youths than President Buhari, while reminding the protesters that the President’s empathy has gone beyond their original complaint against police brutality as the Administration has put in place an institutional review process for police operations while rolling out new Youth empowerment schemes to address poverty and engage our Youths creatively and productively. 

The deliberate policy of continuous communication engagement from President Buhari to #EndSARS protesters is a practical demonstration of a democratic mindset. It shows a President who listens and is empathetic to the patriotic zeal of the protesting Youths to reform the police so it can defend and protect Nigerian citizens in a more responsible manner, the Group stated. 

“The EndSARS protesters in particular and Nigerian Youth, in general, should therefore shift from street protests to pursue peaceful means, in seeking redress through engagement with Government which has shown commitment and capacity. They should see this President as an ally in this cause, and work with him by going into the negotiation with the Government.

“President Buhari is committed to respecting the fundamental rights of citizens, including the right to peaceful protest as enshrined in the Constitution. It must be noted however that to allow protests is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of strength, belief in democracy, and faith in the innate goodness of the Nigerian people.

“We urge Nigerian Youths not to be carried away but to be focused; rather than focus on the protest side, they should look at the progressive side of how their lives can be improved through positive engagement with the Government.

“The present Nigerian Government offers new opportunities and possibilities for Youth advancement. The Muhammadu Buhari Administration has established no fewer than 25 initiatives aimed at empowering Youths across the country, the scale of which is unprecedented and prodigious. 

“The N75 billion Nigeria Youth Investment Fund for the period of 2020 – 2023 is dedicated to investing in the innovative ideas, skills, and talents of Nigerian Youths.

”The birth of the Nigerian Youth Policy in 2019; the Nigeria Youth Investment Fund in July 2020; the Young Farmers Initiative; the Digital Skills, Entrepreneurship, Employability and Leadership/Mentoring (DEEL) programme, which recently received the approval of N4 billion for implementation; and the Not Too Young to Run Act, are worth mentioning here.

“Also included are The Presidential Youth Empowerment Scheme (P-YES); the N-Power; SI and Disaster Management; the Youth Entrepreneurship Support (YES) Programme; the Graduate Internship Scheme (GIS); and the continued funding of the Youth Enterprise with Innovation In Nigeria (YouWIN).

“More so, the $20 million Technology Fund for Young Innovators is one of the most important initiatives empowering Youths across the country to live their dream and change the story of Africa.”

The BMO called on Nigerian Youths to leave the streets and key into any of the numerous Youth-based initiatives which are consistent with the President Buhari Administration’s policy of empowering Youths and positioning them for strategic leadership in different fields of national endeavour.

“President Buhari has shown fatherly love and compassion for the younger generation. This gesture should be reciprocated. This is the moment Nigerian Youths have been waiting for, to be mentored and empowered to play an active role in advancing the progressive cause of Nigeria,” the statement added.