#EndSARS protestors killed by military in Nigeria

By agency reporter
October 23, 2020

An on-the-ground investigation by Amnesty International has confirmed that the Nigerian army and police killed at least 12 peaceful protesters on 20 October 2020, at two locations in Lagos. The killings took place in Lekki and Alausa, where thousands were protesting police brutality as part of the #EndSARS movement. Officers from SARS, the Nigerian police Special Anti-Robbery Squad, have been accused of unlawful arrests, indiscriminate profiling, extortion and extrajudicial killings.

Evidence gathered from eyewitnesses, video footage and hospital reports confirm that between 6:45pm and 9:00pm on Tuesday 20 October, the Nigerian military opened fire on thousands of people who were peacefully calling for good governance and an end to police brutality. 

Witnesses at the Lekki protest grounds told Amnesty that solders arrived at about 6:45pm local time on Tuesday evening, and opened fire on #EndSARS protesters without warning.

Eyewitnesses at Alausa protest ground said they were attacked by a team of soldiers and policemen from the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) Unit at about 8:00 pm, leaving at least two people dead and one critically injured.  

Osai Ojigho, Amnesty International Nigeria Director, said: “Opening fire on peaceful protesters is a blatant violation of people’s rights to life, dignity, freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.  Soldiers clearly had one intention – to kill without consequences.

“These shootings clearly amount to extrajudicial executions. There must be an immediate investigation and suspected perpetrators must be held accountable through fair trials.”

Amnesty received reports that shortly before the shootings, CCTV cameras at the Lekki toll gate, where #EndSARS protesters had been camped for two weeks, were removed by government officials and the electricity was cut – a clear attempt to hide evidence. As in previous cases documented by Amnesty, some of those killed and injured at both grounds were allegedly taken away by the military. 

Amnesty has been monitoring developments across Nigeria since the #EndSARS protest began on 8 October. At least 56 people have died across the country since the protest began, with victims including protesters and people allegedly hired by the authorities to confront the protesters.

* Amnesty International https://www.amnesty.org.uk/

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