Lekki Shooting: Soldiers Took Live Bullets to Scene for Self-defence – General Taiwo

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Lekki Shooting: Soldiers Took Live Bullets to Scene for Self-defence – General Taiwo
Obiajulu Joel Nwolu

Brigadier General Ahmed Taiwo, Commander of 81 Military Intelligence Brigade, Victoria Island, Lagos, which was the Army unit deployed to the Lekki Tollgate area on the night of October 20, has admitted that the officers went to the scene with Live and blank bullet.

He said that the Phase four of military internal security operation which the Army deployed involved soldiers taking live ammunition to the scene for self defence.

He noted that some officers that operated at the tollgate on the night of the shooting were indeed armed with live bullets.

Taiwo, however stressed that only soldiers with blank bullets shot into the air.

He disclosed this on Saturday during the hearing of the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry, investigating the alleged killing of peaceful #EndSARS demonstrators at the Lekki tollgate area on October 20 officers of the Nigerian Army.

The commander appeared before the panel on Saturday for cross-examination by two counsel for #EnSARS protesters, Messrs Adeyinka Olumide-Fusika (SAN) and Mr Adesina Ogunlana, Punch reports.

Responding to a question by Olumide-Fusika on whether the soldiers carried guns to the scene, Taiwo said, “When you are talking of guns, you are talking about high-calibre guns. They were carrying rifles; not guns.”

He added, “A portion of the Force will carry live bullets, in case they are attacked. But the soldiers that formed the firing team, who fired, used blank bullets. And that is why you watched the video and saw exactly what happened.”

Taiwo went further to explain that in Phase Four military internal security operation “soldiers would be given both live and blank bullets.”

“In this particular case, we saw that the peaceful protest had been infiltrated by hoodlums. They were peaceful protesters, no doubt, but there were also hoodlums who sought to take advantage, that was why they were armed with blank bullets in addition with live bullets,” he said.

Meanwhile, CCTV footage turned in by the operator of the Lekki tollgate, Lekki Concession Company deployed not less than seven trucks to the tollgate in the evening of the shooting.

This post was written by Obiajulu Joel Nwolu.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.

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