#EndSARS: Investors Lose N113 billion as Protests Turn Bloody
The #EndSARS protests in Nigeria that degenerated into nationwide chaos has negatively impacted the stock market, with investors losing N113 billion on Wednesday, Oct. 21.
Investors had recorded gains for days, even as of Monday, but the shooting incident which occurred on Tuesday, Oct. 20, at the Lekki toll gate in Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial hub, set the record back.
A group of armed men dressed in the Nigerian Army uniform had opened fire on unarmed and sit-in protesters at the Lekki protest ground. Multiple reports said scores were killed and dozens injured but according to Amnesty International, the Nigerian army and police killed at least 12 peaceful protesters at two locations in Lagos.
In the wake of the Lekki shooting, angry youths took to the streets and began vandalizing and torching government properties and facilities owned by selected politicians, and private citizens who supposedly had affiliation with the government.
The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index declined by 0.75 percent from 28.665.82 to 28,449.49, while market capitalisation shed N113 billion from N14.983 trillion to N14.870 trillion.
It was gathered that most investors are hesitant about committing their funds as they are prioritizing their safety first. They are said to be monitoring the mood of the nation and how the government would respond before investing.
Reacting to the tense security situation in the country, the Director-General of the Nigerian Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA), Mr. Timothy Olawale, said the escalated protests would harm the already bad economy.
“The economy is in tatters, facing the threat of a second recession and unemployment rising to an unmanageable level, the need to stop the slide is not only urgent but important. A consequential effect of the hindered capacity of businesses to function is the higher unemployment rate, further reduction in disposable income of those left in employment, heightened insecurity with the risk of hoodlums hijacking the peaceful protest among others,” he told ThisDay.
Also, the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) earlier estimated that the crisis has cost the economy over N700 billion in losses.
The statewide 24-hours curfew declared by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu enters the second day today and it’s expected to last for 72 hours.
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