CNN Damning and Investigative Reportage Of #LekkiMassacre -By Richard Odusanya

The conspiracy of the Nigeria Army under the command of Maj Gen Muhammad Buhari and Tukur Buratai in the killings of unarmed youths, peacefully protesting police brutality #EndSARS, at the Lekki toll gate on October 20, 2020 has been trending discussion among Nigerians and the international community. It’s also believed that the Nigeria Police Force were also at the scene.

 

“Who gave the orders?” is a question the Nigerian Goverment have refused to answer honestly even in the face of overwhelming evidence that came with receipts of unarmed EndSARS protesters killed by the Nigerian Army at the Lekki Toll Gate.

The CNN, networking with a Balkan investigative reporting network, even went ahead to provide ballistic evidence to corroborate the position of the Amnesty International and validation of our previous publications “The Military Under The Command Of Stone Age Despots.”

Conscience is an open wound only the truth can heal it. The truth is gradually coming out, Saturday’s admission by the Nigeria Army that live rounds were deployed is yet another in a series of constantly denials and changing narratives as to what happened on that black Tuesday night at the Lekki toll gate, where protesters had gathered to peacefully demonstrate against police brutality.

Prior to the Saturday’s admission by the Nigeria Army that live rounds were deployed in the operation, the government that appears weather-beaten became puerile, disdainful, and paranoid about the truth that is evidentiary supported by accuracy of information and technology.

At the outset, the Nigeria Army says we were not at the Lekki Toll Gate and later concured we were there but at the request of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu. But we didn’t use live ammunition. It was blank ammunition we used. And later, they were preventing panel from assessing their morgue. Even a layman knows only a Generalisimo can give orders to the Army.

The Nigeria minister of information and culture Mr. Lai Mohammed in his combative mood and baseless accusations against the CNN Damning investigative report with so much bravado, insisting that the military did not deploy live ammunition to the scene and there was no fatalities as claimed. This is not different from the previous inconsistencies in the face of hard facts. He said that the military “fired blank ammunition into the air.” Just like the previous coterie of denials.

Thankfully, in the testimony of the Nigeria Army at the Judicial panel on Saturday November 21, 2020. The Army as represented by Brig General Ahmed Ibrahim Taiwo, Clearly, changed from the previous narratives and admitted deployment of troops with live ammunition, after the CNN Damning investigative report, contrary to the position of: Ministers of: Information/Culture, Attorney General/Justice, presidential spokesman, defence spokesman, former Army spokesman, and other defenders of the government.

The government has continued with series of activities such as: intimidation, harassment, arrest of the elements connected with the #EndSARS, which has widen the gap between the government and its citizens. Fundamentally, the issues that precipitated the peaceful protest, the draconian measures, and police brutality is yet to be addressed in any form.

Still in the attempt to cover up, another statement was released on Sunday November 22, 2020. Barely twenty four hours after the military representation at the Judicial panel. A statement by Major Osoba Olaniyi on a Sunday, presumably to sustain the attempt at cover up and discredit the CNN investigative report.

Our institutions, particularly the military, that is held in high esteem, have been infested with the lying bug, how do you explain the series of layers of contradictions. Even the testimony of Saturday by Brig General Ahmed Taiwo needs to be overhauled by another statement from the same garrison command, the lies cannot be sustained. Falsehood may travel for years but truth will surely overtake it one day.

Imagine there wasn’t social media.
Imagine the narrative the Goverment would have pushed out and maintained. Imagine the deep secrets the army would have kept. Imagine how peaceful protesters would have been swept and prosecuted as criminals. The Goverment will just be camouflaging the truth to cover up the atrocities.

The Military and Lagos state govt havent said a single truth since this incident took place.
Overtime, our institutions have been weakened by reasons of overbearing tendencies of dictators, particularly during the military incursions into our governing system. Nigeria has become a failed state. The bitter truth is the quagmire of bad governance has made hapless Nigerians lost hope in the country.

It is a paradox that while the nation is yet to recover from the aftermath of the #EndSARS demonstration, the Nigeria police brutality and clampdown on citizens have not abetted. The climax of which is the shooting by the security aides to Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the house of representatives. It also happened in Ekiti state on Sunday, where security details shot and killed citizens.

In broad daylight, they shot and killed another Nigeria citizen, a ‘newspaper vendor’ on the major road, in the capital city of Abuja, without any threat to the person of Mr Femi Gbajabiamila. The United Nation, world bodies and governments of civilised nation need to pay more attention to the happenings in the largest democracy in Africa, before it is too late.

The economy is in total shambles, healthcare in comatose, infrastructural decay, kidnapping, banditry, insurgency, inflation, recession and among others that has bedevilled our country Nigeria. Issues of trust deficits, lack of transparency and accountability has been neglected by the Nigeria authority.

Odusanya is the convener of AFRICA COVENANT RESCUE INITIATIVE ACRI


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