October 4, 2023

#DefendLagos trends ov er Lekki toll gate reopening

The decision of the Lagos State Judicial Panel to allow Lekki Concession Company to reopen the Lekki tollgate has elicited a flurry of reactions.

Many youths have taken to social media, threatening to stage a massive protest on February 13.

The Nation reports the Lekki tollgate has not been operational since October 2020.

The Nation had reported that five members of the nine-man panel led by Doris Okuwobi voted in support of the reopening of the tollgate, while four other persons objected.

Those who objected were representatives of #ENDSARS protesters, Temitope Majekodunmi and Rinuola Oduola as well as Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa and Patience Udoh, representing the civil society.

The company, through its counsel, had been praying to the panel to allow it to take over the plaza for repair and insurance claims since December 2020.

Irked by the decision of the panel, many social media users, especially on Twitter, have shared and reshared graphics, tweets threatening another protest on Saturday.

With over 40,000 tweets, some of the posters have inscriptions such as “No justice, no reopening”, and “Occupy Lekki tollgate”.

Gbenga Sesan, Executive Director of Paradigm Initiative, tweeted: “Lagos State government, Lekki Concession Company, and some members of the Lagos State Judicial Panel members inspired the #OccupyLekkiTollGate protest planned for 7 am on Saturday, February 13.

“We all knew that the panel is just a means to divert youths’ attention, only the rich and those in power get justice.

“But history has been made and stories will be told of how the youths of Nigeria fought against #Badgovernment #EndSARS,” @Shaddyrok tweeted.

Meanwhile, another hashtag which appears to be a counter-protest has also been launched.

Tagged ‘#DefendLagos’, the promoters lamented Lagos State witnessed massive destruction of public and private properties during the #EndSARS protests, arguing tfurther protest that will lead to destruction will not be tolerated.


Promoting the hashtag #DefendLagos protest, Olusoga Owoeye @olusogaowoeye on twitter said: “Show your love for our Lagos. Get your friends and your neighbors to be there.

“Join the DefendLagos Rally at the Lekki toll plaza on the 13th of February. We will not cede our city to criminals and insurrectionists. Lagos is our pride.”

@lollylarry1 said:“No one has the monopoly of madness. The destruction of Lagos by the foolish lots is enough. This time we are going to #DefendLagos and #DemNoBornYourPapaWell to do anyhow.”

@drjollyseg noted: “@jidesanwoolu this is the time to be proactive! If care is not taken, there will be bloodshed and needless deaths following a possible clash between the two groups. Don’t overrule a possible hijack by hoodlums again.”

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