The Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry and restitution probing the shooting of #Endsars protesters at the Lekki tollgate on the night of October 20, 2020 has summoned the army to appear before it.
But reports say the army has indicated its intention not to honour any summons or invitation by the panel, except such invitation is officially communicated to army authorities by the Lagos state government after a member of the panel confirmed the invitation to the army.
Acting Deputy Director, Army Public Relations and 81 Division’s spokesperson, Major Osoba Olaniyi, said it was not the duty of the judicial panel to invite the Army to answer questions regarding the reported shooting of unarmed protesters at the Lekki toll plaza.
Olaniyi stressed that the army intervened in the Lekki tollgate incident based on a request from the Lagos State Government and that it would only appear before the panel based on same directive from the state government.
He said since it is the state government that constituted that panel of inquiry, it is still the state and not members of the panel that can invite the army to the panel.
The army had come under heavy criticism over the shooting of peaceful protesters at the Lekki Tollgate on October 20, 2020, with reports that some Nigerians were killed and many others injured.
The Army denied shooting the protesters. Amnesty International however said it had evidence that no fewer than 12 protesters were killed at the Lekki tollgate and Alausa in Ikeja areas of the state.
The 81 Division’s spokesperson said the military will also not disclose the number of its personnel deployed in the Lekki tollgate on the night of the incident, saying that it is against operational security.