Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said Nigeria is in dire need of healing, following the #EndSARS protests that resulted in massive destruction across the country.
Osinbajo said this at the Consultative Forum on Rebuilding Lagos and Inauguration of the Board of Trustees of Rebuild Lagos Trust Fund, held in Alausa, Lagos.
The event attracted notable personalities, including the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, who was represented by Senator Solomon Olamilekan; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, and Governor of the Central Bank, CBN, Godwin Emefiele, among others.
The Vice President, in his address, said: “Our state, like our nation, needs healing. We recognize that the balm for a wounded society is truth and justice.
“This is why Judicial Panels of Inquiry have been established all across the country. Their mandate is to investigate cases of police brutality against citizens, where necessary compensate victims.
“Specifically in Lagos, the mandate of the inquiry has been expanded to include a full investigation of the Lekki toll gate incidents. This process has begun and all federal agencies and the armed services are participating actively, as Mr President said, and I quote:
‘’We will also ensure that all those responsible for the misconduct or wrongful acts are brought to justice.
“We have been through a very difficult time but all our moral traditions instruct us that character is forged in hardship. The things that truly strengthen us are gained in seasons of adversity.
“The pursuit of restorative justice, recompense for injury to innocents and a reckoning for perpetrators of abuse are essential components of the moral and ethical reconstruction of our homestead. I urge all of us to give this process a chance to work and to commit to the advocacy and participation that it will take to enable this process to succeed.”
On the clamour for special attention to Lagos State, Osinbajo said: “This is the state that leads by far in the collection of non-oil revenues. In so many ways, our fortunes as a nation are closely tied to the fortunes of this great state. “But even the darkest of clouds bear a silver lining. These trying times offer an invaluable learning opportunity, a teachable moment, and it is the lessons we draw from this period that will shape our path going forward.
“But it is clear that the task of reconstruction goes beyond physical infrastructure or brick and mortar. There is a moral, social and ethical reconstruction to be undertaken as well.
“We must rebuild trust between the government and the governed; the vast majority of who are young persons, rebuild trust between law enforcement agents and the communities that they are meant to serve.
“It is now time to rebuild. It is time for the painful and costly task of reconstruction and rehabilitation. It is now time for the private sector, our international friends and partners, and all who love this city to make their contributions to the rebuilding and reconstruction effort. When Lagos works, it works for all.”