By Mukwuzi Joseph
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has revealed that footage obtained from the CCTV cameras installed at the Lekki toll gate showed that indeed Nigerian soldiers were at the scene of the shooting of unarmed protesters.
Sanwo-Olu revealed this when he appeared on CNN’s “Connect the World with Becky Anderson programme” on Monday.
“From the footage that we could see, it seems to be…there would be men in military uniform, who should be Nigerian Army or something,” Sanwo-Olu said.
But when pressed further by Anderson, the governor said, “Yes, they were there. That’s what the footage shows.”
Asked further if he was committed to full investigation into the shooting incident and if the soldiers involved would be held accountable, Governor Sanwo-Olu responded affirmatively, but said only President Muhammadu Buhari could ensure the soldiers were punished in his capacity as the Commander-in-Chief.
The governor, who described the incident as “extremely unimaginable”, assured that the Lagos State Government would make the CCTV footage of the shooting incident available to the state’s judicial panel of enquiry investigating the matter.
He said: “We will be committed to a full investigation of what happened and people would be held accountable. They certainly would be held accountable. We would do everything possible to ensure that they are held accountable.
“People have claimed that their friends and family members have been killed. So, this Judicial Panel of Enquiry is meant to bring all of these stories to accountability; where we can make restitutions, where families can prove and indentify officers that were responsible for this.
“I am not the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces; I am Governor of a State. The report would be out and we would channel the report to all the relevant authorities in the state to ensure that every one that is found culpable is accountable for the act.”
On if himself and President Buhari were compelled to speak on the protesters because of international pressures, Sanwo-Olu said: “There are no international pressures whatsoever. These are genuine protesters that we all believe and we all have knowledge about. I was the first governor among governors with due respect to all my other colleagues who came out to meet with them, who started from the front. I carried the EndSARS flags with them. I met with them twice and we all had the rally together and worked together.”
Sanwo-Olu further assured that the two-week-long #EndSARS protests would bring about positive change in the country.
“I genuinely believe there would be change for two reasons. One, what has happened, especially in Lagos is extremely unimaginable. Number two is that it was a clarion call for all of us in government, especially understanding and realising what the youths truly want us to be doing. So, it hit all of us like a thunderbolt and it was just a wake-up call,” he said.F