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Panel report confirms Lekki tollgate massacre during Endsars protest

When the panel was set up, it was known that they had a historic moment to deal with and expectedly, members of the panel led by retired justice Doris Okuwobi. On the eve of the anniversary of the Lekki toll gate incidence, the minister of information and agent of the federal government, Lai Mohammed addressed a press conference and titled the incidence a “phantom massacre”. He was speaking on behalf of the federal government as he addressed the press conference in his capacity ad the minister for information. However, with this report by the panel, It was addressed ad the “Lekki Massacre”.

The findings of the Lagos state judicial panel of inquiry on the Lekki toll gate incidence is a vindication of protesters who came out to demand reform, to ask for an end to be put to the continuous killing and extortion of Nigerian youths by the Nigerian police. They were arbitrarily arrested, murdered, detained for merely exercising what was ordinarily what was meant to be a constitutional right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly as stated in section 30 and 40 of the constitution.

So much has been said about what happened or what didn’t happen at the toll gate on October 2020. Now that the government inquiry on the incidence has come out to state in clear and unambiguous terms that there was a massacre on 20th of October 2020, peaceful protesters were shot at and killed by their own government and military, the army made efforts to conceal the criminality that they committed, the LCC and Lagos state government took steps to truncate the truth and cover up the atrocities that they committed by tampering with the scene of the crime.

“The miitary did not shoot at protesters at the toll gate. The only massacre recorded was on social media. Hence, there were neither bodies or blood. Amnesty international, CNN, and the runaway DJ should all apologize for the misleading the world”. This was the statement the minister for information, Lai Mohammed made concerning on the eve of the massacre anniversary. What does that say about the Nigerian government? Especially seeing how resolute they were with their side of the story only for this panel report to be released.

This report has overtaken the Nigerian government’s attempt at denying the massacre. The panel report is very clear with the details of the number of people who died from the shooting, people who got injured and the number of people who were harassed by the security agencies. It was also clearly stated that there was an attempt at cover up. Not just to cover up the crime, but to cover up the humanities of those murdered and harassed.

The panelists have recommended to the government to change the Lekki toll gate’s name to the endsars tollgate. That is in honour of the heroes of democracy who were killed at the spot. It has been said that Lai Mohammed should tender in his resignation to the president because it is preposterous how the spokesperson for the federal republic of Nigeria has been exposed yet again as someone who went on public record to lie, attack the media and try to discredit an atrocious act that was committed against Nigerians.

In the aftermath of the protest, DJ Switch was attacked by government supporters, who accused her of spreading lies about the protest.

On Monday night, after the panel’s report was leaked, she wrote on Twitter: “Shattered so many lives, tried to destroy mine. Only for what you desperately tried to hide to be made public… by you! The truth needs no defense! #EndSARS”

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