Nigeria

#ENDSARS Protest: Judicial panel visits Military Hospital, discovers bullet shells at Lekki tollgate

By Onozure Dania, Lagos

The Panel began which began full sitting on Tuesday, was taken round the Military facility which were just renovated.

They were taken in one of the newly renovated buildings in the premises, where the panel went round to sees if there is anything that can be of help in the investigation.

Earlier the Military personnel denied the panel and journalist access into the hospital, saying that they can not be allowed in excerpt they get a directive that, from their superior.

Members of the Panel are Justice Doris Okuwobi (Rtd), Chairman of the panel, Rinu Oduala, Temitope Majekodunmi, other members of the panel are Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa, Director, Lagos State Directorate of Citizen’s Rights, Mrs Oluwatoyin Odusanya; a representative of the civil society groups Ms Patience Udoh, and a human rights activist, Lucas Koyejo the Zonal Coordinator (South-West Zone) – National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and Mr Segun Awosanya (Segalink).

A member of the panel, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa SAN, said all the matters relating to the #ENDSARS protest should be directed to the Lagos Judicial panel.

He said that they were not just at Military hospital, on the authority of the governor of Lagos state, but also that of the president.

Adegboruwa said “ You recall that it was the National Executive Council NEC, that gave the directive that this panel should be set up, so we are only following due process and its good that we just inspect the mortuary we make our findings and go back to make our relevant conclusions”.

He said this while the panel was waiting for the military to allow them access into their facility.

When asked what the panel intends to do if the military still don’t allow them access, the learned silk said “We would take up, other options, there are other options, open to us, if we are not allowed access we can’t force ourselves on them, if they don’t allow us access we would go back and take other options.

He added that they would not be forcefully injected out of the Ikoyi Military Hospital, but that if they ask them to go out, they would go out.

Adegboruwa further said that they have confidential information that facilities at the Military hospital in Ikoyi, may be relevant to their investigation.

“ We have confidential information that facilities at the Military Hospital in Ikoyi here may be relevant to our investigation, we have a pathologist with us and our interest is to inspect the Mortuary hospital, we don’t know what we would find there’’ he said.

“The visit to the Military hospital absolutely has something to do with the Lekki event of the 20the of October 2020, well like I said we have no conclusion in our minds as to what we would find here. But we have intelligence to the extent that our work requires that we inspect the mortuary of the military hospital of here.”

“As you have heard them say this hospital is controlled by 65 battalion and we have also taken steps to be able to reach the authorities of the 65 battalions and the 82 division on Kofo Abayomi, so we have options if we are not allowed access.” Adegboruwa said.

When asked if it is possible to inform the authorities ahead of time next time, Adegboruwa said “That would have defeated our purpose, we just got the information impromptu, we could not give them notice because of the importance of what we wanted to do, it is an investigation, if we give them notice ahead of time, that may jeopardise the essence of the investigation.

We have no conclusion that there is anything amiss, is an intelligence that is leading us to investigation, so we really don’t have any evidence to say whether there is anything or not our own is verification through investigation.”

Also five bullet shells were yesterday found at the scene of the Lekki toll gate, protest venue of the #ENDSARS, October 20, 2020, shootings, during the Lagos State Judicial panel’s visit to the toll gate.

Some of the bullet shells we found lying in the drainage at the toll gate scene of the

The Managing Director of the Lekki Toll Gate Mr Abayomi Omomuwa, at the visit to the Lekki toll gate told the panel that a camera on the mast worked until the carnage on Wednesday October 21.

He said that it is not working at the moment, but stopped working after the carnage.

At the resumed proceedings of the panel yesterday, the Panel invited the Lekki Concession Company, (LCC), Managing Director Mr Abayomi Omomuwa to come and testify before it the event of October 20, soldiers shooting and killings at the #ENDSARS protesters at the Lekki toll gate.

The head of the legal department of LCC, Mr Gbolahan Agboluwaje told the panel that they had no legal representation as they got the letter of invitation from the panel late on Wednesday.

He said ” When we received the letter on Wednesday we discovered that three things were required, which are the footage, the investigation report and any other document. We have the footage, we have not done the investigation report and we don’t have other documents”.

Agboluwaje then asked for an adjournment to enable them get a legal representation as they couldn’t get any since they got the letter late on Wednesday.

“We would be happy if we are given time to get a legal representation, we got a very short notice” he said.

He said that due to the power outage, they recorded the footage at the Lekki toll gate late.

When the Chairman of the panel Justice Okuwobi asked if they had the footage, Agboluwaje said ‘Yes we are prepared to show the footage.”

Mr Abiodun Owonikoko SAN, also announced his appearance at the proceedings to represent Lagos State government.

He said “I have the instructions to represent the Lagos state government in this proceeding,”.

Justice Okuwobi said “Until he is represented by a counsel, we would not take his testimony, no person would be denied having any legal representation of his choice, but they should bear in mind that the terms of reference of this panel”.

The judge further said the business of the day is to take evidence of the witnesses and visit the Lekki toll gate.

Consequently after consulting with the other members of the panel, she ordered that the panel and witnesses should visit the toll gate and retire back to the venue of the sitting.

The proceeding was adjourned till Tuesday.

The panel will sit from 10am to 4pm for six months. The designated sitting days are Tuesday, Friday and Saturday at the Lagos Court of Arbitration, No 1A, Remi Oluwode Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos.

Also five bullet shells were yesterday found at the scene of the Lekki toll gate, protest venue of the #ENDSARS, October 20, 2020, shootings, during the Lagos State Judicial panel’s visit to the toll gate.

Some of the bullet shells we found lying in the drainage at the toll gate scene of the

The Managing Director of the Lekki Toll Gate Mr Abayomi Omomuwa, at the visit to the Lekki toll gate told the panel that a camera on the mast worked until the carnage on Wednesday October 21.

He said that it is not working at the moment, but stopped working after the carnage.

Vanguard

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