The Nigerian Army Gives Update On #ENDSARS Lekki Shooting Of Protesters By Men Of The Nigerian Army

Photo Of Coordinator Defence Media Operations, Major General John Eneche

The Nigerian Army through its Defence Headquarters (DHQ) has not left their stand on the report that its operatives shot some unarmed #ENDSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate plaza on Tuesday, October 20, 2020. According to them, the reports are mere allegations. The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Major General John Eneche made this known on Thursday while answering questions on the incident from defence correspondents at the Defence Headquarters in Abuja. Maj. Gen. Eneche also noted that he is not permitted I speak further on the incident so as not to compromise the outcome of the findings by the Commission of Enquiry already constituted by the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwolu. Recall that the Tuesday shootings Of #ENDSARS protesters by the Nigerian army has attracted wide attention and criticism at both local and international levels. Despite this, Maj. Gen. Eneche was reluctant to give answers to questions related to the shooting declaring that the alleged role of the army in the incident is nothing but mere speculations and urged Nigerians to remain calm and wait for the outcome of the investigation. In his words, “We are dealing with major operations, anything outside this is what is called Operation MENSA, I may not want to go too much into Operation MENSA because it is not a major operation. We have nine Operations and other subsidiary Operations which I have been directed to focus. Operation MENSA is strictly under the policy directive of the various states we have them all over the country and it is the oldest of all Operations. For this Operation you have the Military, Navy Air Force, Civil Defence and the Police put together. So these Operations are still standing and running and I am aware that the state governments are using them in all these capacities, that is internal security, the level we are now is internal security and that is why the Police proactively came out and then deployed all their Force package that are necessary to handle that so that is where we are. So if there was anything and if it is true, why am I saying if it is true because up to this morning, I even called analysts who have analyzed videos that were photoshopped and put together, if not that I am not permitted, I would have forwarded it to you. The issue is not an operation that I can respond to. But I can tell you that it is an allegation for now, so let us not set the cart before the horse. If the matter was still open-ended I would have had I response for you but it is no longer open-ended, because immediately, not even up to five hours, before midnight the Governor of Lagos set up an Inquiry, so whatever we say now will not be fair to the commission.”

Photo of the Governor Of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwolu

On other news making the rounds at this hour, the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu has explained in a media brief on Arise News on Thursday what he meant when he described the individuals behind the Lekki shootings as “forces beyond his control” noting that he made that statement because he does not have power over the military. According to him, What I was trying to explain is that the hierarchy and chains of command of the military is not something that I know or have responsibility for, so I do not pretend that I have such powers to control or activate the military. There may be more to the End SARS due to the audios, visuals intercepted by security operatives in the country. There have been audio communications we have heard that connote or suggest that there is more to the End SARS than all of us thought. I cannot begin to make extensive comment or comment that might sound insensitive. I think these are the work of the security operatives. I am sure they are in possession of some of these materials, audio/visuals that we have seen and it goes to some quarters that we need to investigate that some of these things are deeper than we have seen on the street. It is the work of the security operatives to try and ascertain clearly. At my level, I cannot speculate if they have not been verified and confirmed.”

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