- The United States government has shared its thoughts on claims that soldiers shot protesters at the Lekki tollgate
- According to a recent report by the US Department of State noted that accurate fatalities from the shooting were not available
- It would be recalled that both local and international media had reported deaths from the shooting of #EndSARS protesters
A report by the US Department of State says various reports by local and international bodies on the shooting of #EndSARS protesters at Lekki tollgate on October 20, 2020, could not be verified.
According to the report released on Tuesday, March 30, the United States government stated that accurate information on fatalities resulting from the shooting was not available at the end of the year.
Amnesty International had reported 10 people died during the event, however, the federal government disputed the report, and no other organization was able to back up the claim.
The agency issued a statement alleging that the Nigerian authorities resorted to intimidating demonstrators and covering up the incident, instead of ensuring justice for those killed. Read more:
The report reads in part:
"At times authorities sought to investigate, and when found culpable, held police, military, or other security force personnel accountable for the use of excessive or deadly force or for the deaths of persons in custody, but impunity in such cases remained a significant problem.
State and federal panels of inquiry investigating suspicious deaths did not always make their findings public.
The government reported two deaths connected to the event. One body from the toll gate showed signs of blunt force trauma. A second body from another location in Lagos State had bullet wounds.
At year’s end the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution continued to hear testimony and investigate the shooting at Lekki Toll Gate."
Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that the National Economic Council (NEC) chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, ordered the immediate establishment of state-based judicial panels of inquiry to oversee issues linked to police brutality.
According to the NEC, the panel which will be set up in all Nigerian states is to receive and investigate complaints of all sorts of violence by operatives of the force and deliver justice to victims eventually.
In another report, the presidency welcomed the ruling that sentenced a police corporal, Joseph Omotosho to death and found four others guilty over extra-judicial killing.
The officers who all served with the now-defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) unit.
Omotosho and four other police constables were found guilty by the Court following their trial on an eight-count charge of conspiracy, murder, and stealing.