Group Asks Panel to Stop Probe of Lekki Shootings

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Says Lagos gov has a case to answer

The Lagos Emancipation Project (LEP) has asked the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry and Restitution for Victims of SARS and related Abuses to stop probe into the October 20 Lekki Toll Gate shootings.

The group, led by a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Babatunde Fashanu, said they would go to court to restrain the panel.

In a pre-action notice, dated November 3, 2020 and addressed to the chairman of the panel, retired Justice Doris Okuwobi, the group contended that since “it had been established that the soldiers who allegedly opened fire on #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki tollgate were invited by the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, it would be unfair for the same governor to set up a panel to probe the incident and then take actions on its report.”

It added: “It is our belief that the person or authority who invited the military to the scene to take action against peaceful protesters is neck-deep in whatever transpired there and its aftermath and is, at least, one of the dramatis personae to answer for it.

“By our reckoning, the panel is to sit and submit its report to the Governor of Lagos State, who is empowered to act on it by virtue of the provisions of the Tribunals of Inquiry Law of Lagos State. Having regard to the fact that the governor to be reported to and who is to take action on the report seems to have a case to answer in the matter and he is not allowed by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to act in his own cause, we hereby request that you avoid sitting or hearing any matter on the Lekki Tollgate incident in the proceedings of the judicial panel so that it can be looked at by some other authority who would not have to report to the governor”, the notice read in part.

The panel has seven days to comply or face litigation.