Okwe Obi, Abuja
A Coalition of Civil Society For Human Rights and Good Governance Africa has accused the Cable News Network (CNN) of undermining the integrity of Nigeria following its report on the #EndSARS protest, in which it alleged that the Nigerian Army opened fire on demonstrators at the Lekki toll gate on October 20.
The group, in a statement signed by its representatives, Prof Bankole Amuda and three others, dismissed the report as fake, repulsive and a concocted piece of deliberate falsehood by an otherwise reputable international cable network.
Prof Amuda claimed that from its findings, no protester was killed, as only blank ammunition was used by soldiers to restore normalcy.
It reads in part:”We condemn the CNN and all their evil collaborators for the fake report of alleged massacre at the Lekki tollgate on October 20, 2020, as nothing can be further from the truth.
“We are of the firm view that the CNN only relied on fake videos posted on the internet by enemies of the state to draw conclusion of a massacre, that only exists, or existed in their fertile mind and that of its collaborators – local and international.
“We recognise the right of CNN to carry out exclusive investigative activities around the world, in a bid to expose corruption, human rights violation and other ills perpetrated by governments or groups/individuals, as the case may be.
“In the face of this, however, we hasten to warn against attempts to package falsehood in the guise of truth, to satisfy preconceived agenda to destroy Nigeria.
“May we warn CNN and the like, that Nigeria is not a banana republic, where cases of provocation and incitement against a constitutional government will be allowed or tolerated.
“As a responsible group, we have been following proceedings at the Lagos State Judicial Commission of Inquiry, and we can say authoritatively, that no family has yet to come forward with evidence of death of loved ones.
“We are, therefore, at a loss as to CNN’s obsession with ‘massacre’, even when respectable authorities like the military etc, have come out to say the contrary.
“We maintain that the Nigerian Army, and the Military, remains one of the best in global equation,with professionally trained personnel, who do not compromise the rules of engagement in whatever operations they embark on.”