The Nigerian Army says it took live rounds to the Lekki toll gate in Lagos to protect its team that was deployed against the EndSARS protesters on the evening of October 20, 2020.
The Commander of the Intelligence Brigade of the 81 Division of the Nigerian Army, Brigadier General Ibrahim Taiwo while being cross examined at the Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution for victims of SARS and other Related Abuses sitting in Lagos said the live rounds were not for use against the protesters.
The cross examination followed Brigadier Taiwo’s testimony at the panel last Saturday regarding the shooting by the military at the toll gate during the endSARS protest on October, 20.
Brigadier Taiwo, cross examined by counsel to victims of endSARS victims Olumide Fusika and Adesina Ogunlana, said the soldiers who opened fired used blank bullets and that their colleagues with the live rounds were on ground to protect them from trouble makers.
He said the soldiers were at the toll gate to maintain peace and order having been called out when the police were overwhelmed by the activities of hoodlums but maintained that only blank bullets were shot into the air to disperse the protesters and that no protester died or sustained injury from the shots.
When reminded that Governor Babajide Sanwaolu had admitted that two people died and several others sustained injuries from gunshots, he responded that the governor may have been misinformed.
On further interrogation that the army had in a tweet from its verified Twitter handle denied being at the toll gate on the said date, and also described viral online videos as fake news, Taiwo said the initial statement was made because the army did not have all the facts of the incident at their disposal at the time.
His cross examination was still ongoing as at the time of this report.