Lagos Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu must appear before the panel to question the Lekki killings, insists the #EndSARS lawyer.
Nigeria online news reports that the lawyer for some #EndSARS protesters in Lagos state, Mr. Adesina Ogunlana, has said that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu will have to appear before the Judicial Investigation Panel to investigate the alleged murder of #EndSARS protesters by soldiers at the Lekki tollbooth on the night of October 20.
According to Ogunlana, since the military alleged to the panel that their operation that day was at the invitation of the governor, it would be important for the governor to appear before the panel, in particular to demonstrate his professed belief in the rule of law.
The Commander of the 81st Military Intelligence Brigade, Victoria Island, Lagos, Brigadier General Ahmed Taiwo, during his cross-examination on Saturday said the Army Chief of Staff, Lieutenant General. Tukur Buratai, ordered the deployment of soldiers at the toll booth and other parts of the state that day following a request from the governor.
“He (the governor) called the Chief of the Army General Staff, after which the 81st Division of the Nigerian Army was ordered to enter phase four of the internal security operation; the call was in the afternoon, before 4 pm, “Taiwo told the panel.
Meanwhile, in an interview with one of our correspondents on Friday, the attorney was asked if the Governor’s appearance was important to his clients’ case and if he would be pushing for the Governor to appear before the panel.
Ogunlana said: “Of course, that is taken (sic). That person (Sanwo-Olu) will have to come; it is a factor and it will come. Saying that he believes in the rule of law, his Attorney General, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), has come to appear before that panel just to make a short speech and affirm that the Government of Lagos State is truly committed to unraveling the truth about what happened in Lekki that day; and the military has brought it up, so it’s a factor. “
While the Nigerian military has consistently maintained that it did not kill any of the #EndSARS protesters, Ogunlana, on the other hand, insisted that “people died on my side.”
His clients, Kamsiyochukwu Perpetual, Dabira Ayuku and Samuel Isah, had submitted in their individual affidavits under oath to the panel led by retired judge Doris Okuwobi, emphasizing that the soldiers and police officers shot and killed the protesters.
Perpetual, in his petition, stated that he saw many bodies, including one with a bullet-torn head at Reddington Hospital, Lekki, the morning after the shooting.
“The doctors denied us access to see the bodies. The media man came in again and we could only see one of the corpses whose head was ripped open by (a) bullet fired in the head. He lay down in the emergency unit. The doctor named the corpse ‘John Doe’ (sic) “.
Ayuku, in her sworn statement, said: “The soldiers asked people to run while they were being shot. I remember one soldier in particular who kept dancing while shooting. “
Additionally, Isah said that he witnessed how police officers allegedly shot dead a young Nigerian man carrying the flag.
He said: “That young man was hit by a bullet in the head and died immediately, falling to the road with the Nigerian flag in his hand (sic).”
Isah said he managed to videotape the shooting of the soldiers on his mobile phone and had presented two shots to the panel.
But Taiwo, who testified for the Nigerian military before the panel on November 14, said the soldiers only used blank bullets, which they fired into the air.
“Spent blank ammunition contains only gunpowder, which only makes a noise and a flash,” Taiwo said.
The general said that a blank bullet “cannot harm meat and you have nothing to fear except that you take a rifle, put it to your eye and shoot. Even if you put it against your skin and shoot it, only the burn marks will show. “