Global rights organisation, Amnesty International, has alleged that the lives of its employees in Nigeria were in danger following its reports on the Lekki shootings of October 20, 2020.
Amnesty, in a statement on Friday, said some faceless groups issued threats to attack its workers and office premises. It, therefore, called on the Nigerian authorities to “to ensure the protection of lives and properties of every person in the country”.
The statement reads, “Amnesty International draws the attention of the Nigerian authorities and the general public to the intimidation and outright threats of attacks that were issued against its staff, supporters, and premises by a faceless and unknown group at a press conference held on 4 November 2020.
“Similar faceless groups had previously invaded our office and given us ultimatum to leave Nigeria. Amnesty International is a global human rights movement and we are independent of any government. Our mandate is to hold authorities to account for their human right obligations and commitments. This, we have consistently done since June 1967 when we first started working in and on Nigeria.
“Every person whose rights are violated is entitled to an effective remedy. Exposing human rights violations and seeking redress for them is largely dependent on the degree of security enjoyed by civil society groups like Amnesty International.
“The Nigerian authorities owe a legal duty to ensure the protection of lives and properties of every person in the country. Malicious threats will not deter us from continuing to speak against human rights violations and abuses by state and non-state actors.”
Meanwhile, the much awaited footage of October 20, shooting of #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate plaza, was partly viewed yesterday by the Lagos State Judicial panel of inquiry on dissolved Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) brutality and other matters.
The footage, which is in series, will take nothing less than 18 hours before it can be completely viewed. At some point, while the footage was being viewed, many people including the panel members, audience and journalists showed lack of interest in it because it was boring and monotonous.
The footage was from the Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) of Lekki Concession Company (LCC), the operator Lekki Toll Gate plaza. While presenting the footage before the panel, led by Justice Doris Okuwobi (retd) on Friday, Chief Executive Officer of LCC, Yomi Omomuwasan, stated that the footage captured activities before and after the military personnel attacked youths protesting against police brutality and extra-judicial killing in the country.
Omomuwasan added that the footage was presented to dispel claims that the CCTV cameras mounted at the tollgate were removed days before the military personnel attacked the youths at the scene.
After the presentation, Justice Okuwobi approved that the panel view the video footage of the night of October 20 when soldiers were alleged to have shot at the peaceful protesters at the Lekki tollgate.
After the approval, the counsel to Lagos State Government, Jelili Owonikoko, and LCC lawyer, Rotimi Seriki, prayed that the footage should be fast forwarded to about two hours before the military personnel’s arrival at the toll plaza considering the length of the visual.
The counsel to EndSARS protesters, Adesina Ogunlana, however, rejected the appeal and demanded that the footage presented by LCC should be viewed completely to ascertain if it had not been edited. Ogunlana, who had presented three protesters, Victoria Oniru, Dabira Ayuku, and Perpetual Kamsiyuchukwu, requested that the panel should allow him to cross-examine the LCC boss.