A judicial panel of inquiry has found the Nigerian army killed at least 11 people when soldiers opened fire on unarmed protestors at the Lekki toll gate in Lagos just over a year ago—a politically seismic event that still reverberates. The panel’s report, submitted Nov. 15 to the Lagos state government, describes the shootings as a “massacre.” The findings cast a shadow over repeated denials by the government and the army that any killings occurred—consistently labelling such reports “fake news.”
The sit-in at the Lekki toll gate on Oct. 20, 2020 was one of many across the country against police brutality, which initially focused on the notorious Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). But the #EndSARS protests transformed into a much broader social movement demanding political reform. Decentralized, and led by young people, it condemned all political parties equally. The government has continued to hound activists, claiming they are “anarchists.” Rights groups are demanding President Muhammadu Buhari act on the panel’s findings—including a recommendation that compensation be paid to victims and their families.
From The New Humanitarian, Nov. 19
See our last report on the Lekki Massacre
Photo: Sahara Reporters