How police tried to cover up shooting of protesters at Lekki tollgate – #EndSARS panel
The Lagos #EndSARS panel has stated that police officers attempted to cover up the shooting of protesters at Lekki tollgate on October 20, 2020.
Recall that more than a year now, the panel has heard petitions on police brutality and has also investigated the contentious Lekki tollgate incident.
The panel in its report submitted on Monday said the officers deployed to the tollgate “shot at, assaulted and battered unarmed protesters”.
The panel said the attack on protesters resulted in injuries and deaths.
According to the panel’s report, the police officers tried to cover up their actions by picking up bullets.
“The panel found that the Nigerian Police Force deployed its officers to the Lekki tollgate on the night of the 20th October, 2020 and between that night and the morning of the 21st of October, 2020, its officer shot at, assaulted and battered unarmed protesters, which led to injuries and deaths,” the report reads.
“The police officers also tried to cover up their actions by picking up bullets.”
The panel said the Lekki Concession Company (LCC) refused to provide vital evidence that would have aided its investigation.
LCC was also accused of manipulating the CCTV footage presented to the panel during its sitting.
“The panel found that LCC hampered the panel’s investigation by refusing to turn over some useful and vital information/evidence as requested by the panel and the forensic expert engaged by the panel, even where such information and evidence was by the company’s admission, available,” the report reads.
“It manipulated the incomplete CCTV Video footage of the Lekki tollgate on the night of the 20th of October 2020, which it tendered before the panel.”
According to the panel, the cleaning of the Lekki tollgate after the incident and failure to preserve the scene ahead of potential investigations proves there was a cover-up attempt.
The panel recommended the sanctioning of the officers of the army and police who participated in the “shooting, injuring and killing of unarmed protestors”.
The panel also recommended a public apology to #EndSARS protesters who were killed, injured, and traumatised by the incident.