Contrary to the denial by the Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-olu, that he knew nothing about the killing and maiming of peaceful EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate area of the state by personnel of the Nigerian Army, soldiers involved in the operation have now confirmed that they were actually drafted in for the mission on the request of the governor.
The soldiers had on Tuesday night opened fire on the protesters, killing and injuring many of them.
The army personnel also prevented ambulances from accessing the scene to evacuate those injured to the hospital after opening fire on them.
The soldiers also seized and carried away eight corpses of protesters killed at the scene.
The incident triggered widespread violence across Lagos and other parts of the country, leading to the destruction of public properties.
Shortly after the governor declared a round-the-clock curfew in the state that fateful Tuesday, some persons were captured on camera dismantling the CCTV attached to the toll gate, one of the main convergence points for young Nigerians demanding an end to police brutality and state repression.
Bosch, the company that made the CCTV, confirmed the removal from the toll gate.
Most of the street lighting around the area were suddenly turned off as soon as it was night
Minutes later, the heavily armed soldiers moved into the scene to complete the plan.
By the time sounds of their guns died down, dozens of protesters had been killed.
Though Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu blamed ‘forces beyond our control’ for the attack, while insisting that he had no authority over military engagements, the soldiers involved in the heinous mission have now exposed the truth.
The soldiers, who were deployed from 65 Battalion, Bonny Camp, Victoria Island, Lagos, told some of the victims’ relatives after dumping them at MRS Hospital that they were sent by Governor Sanwo-Olu.
“They came in two Hilux vans with atleast eight bodies. Some were still alive when they returned. They dumped them at MRS Hospital. They told us clearly that it was Governor Sanwo-Olu that sent them,” a brother to one of the victims, told SaharaReporters.
It was, however, gathered that against widespread belief by members of the public, Brigadier-General Francis Omata didn’t command the soldiers nor was there when shots were fired.
He was said to be at home when the shooting occurred and was shocked when people started calling him that soldiers were at the toll gate attacking protesters.
After rushing to the scene and identifying himself, Omata was able to pull back the soldiers.
It was then he discovered that they were from there 65 Battalion, Bonny Camp, which is headed by Lt Col S. O. Bello.