The Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, has described the nationwide RevolutionNow protests of Wednesday, August 5, 2020, as a “child’s play.”

Law enforcement cracked down on RevolutionNow protesters in the Nigerian capital city of Abuja, the commercial hub of Lagos and elsewhere across the country, made them lie on lawns, arrested them and dispersed others.

Some 50 protesters were arrested nationwide.

Movement convener, Omoyele Sowore, who publishes the influential online newspaper, SaharaReporters, couldn’t partake in this year’s street march after he was arrested last year and charged for treason. His participation this year would have violated a bail condition.

Omoyele Sowore was arrested for protesting in 2019 (SaharaReporters)
Omoyele Sowore was arrested for protesting in 2019 (SaharaReporters)

The protests are organised to kick against bad governance and endemic corruption, Sowore says.

“Well, was it really a protest? By my estimation, it just seemed like a child’s play because protests by their very nature are spontaneous things, mass things”, presidency spokesperson Adesina said on ChannelsTV. “These are just a sprinkle of people trying to be funny. As far as I am concerned, it is nothing to worry about,” he added.

“A revolution is always a mass thing, not a sprinkle of young boys and girls you saw yesterday in different parts of the country. I think it was just a funny thing to call it a revolution protest.

“In a country of 200 million people and if you see a sprinkle of people saying they are doing a revolution, it was a child’s play.

“Well, it will always matter because if you said it was a revolution, revolutions by definition are quite well known.

Mr Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity (Premiumtimes)
Mr Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity (Premiumtimes)

“Revolution is something that turns the normal order. What happened yesterday, would you call it a revolution? It was just an irritation, just an irritation and some people want to cause irritation in the country and what I will say is when things boil over, they boil over because you continue to heat them,” Adesina said.

Outspoken and combative Sowore contested the 2019 Nigerian presidency alongside incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and 70 others.

Sowore posted 33,953 votes. Eventual winner of the vote, Buhari, annexed 15,191,847,while second placed candidate, Abubakar, garnered 11,262,978 votes.

Third placed candidate Felix Nicholas of the Peoples’ Coalition Party (PCP) gained a total of 110,196 votes.