PRNigeria Vindicated As LASG Rejects Panel Report, Says No Evidence On ‘Massacre’
Nigerian reportable media platform PRNigeria has been vindicated by the Lagos State Government (LASG) on its editorial stance and insistence that troops of the Nigerian Army or other security agencies did not arbitrarily kill EndSARS protesters at the infamous Lekki Tollgate in Lagos.
In a White Paper released Tuesday night, LASG says the inconsistencies and contradictions in the panel’s report concerning deaths at Lekki Tollgate rendered findings and conclusions “totally unreliable and therefore unacceptable.”
While most media platforms were herping on the ‘massacre’ narrative despite a dearth of evidence to that effect, PRNigeria has remained consistent in its reportage based on the known facts despite scores of victimization from various quarters.
While the Justice Doris Okowubi (rtd) led Panel of Inquiry on Restitution for Victims of EndSARS Protest and Other Matters claimed in its report that nine persons were killed by Nigerian security forces, the Lagos State Government said, “finding of nine deaths at LTG on 20th October 2020 is even more baffling because apart from listing out their names in tabular form at pages 297-298, the JPI offered no explanation regarding the circumstances of their death.”
The government made this claim while reacting to the 24th recommendation of the panel that “a monument memorializing the lives lost and those injured at the Lekki Toll Gate with the names inscribed on the Monument,” be created.
In the white paper, the Lagos State government said the recommendation “is not acceptable.”
Reacting to the number of deaths recorded at the Lekki tollgate, the state government said there was no evidence.
“The names simply sprang up at pages 297-298 of the report without any justification. It is quite astonishing that in the list of 11 deaths set out at pages 297-298, two of the names appeared twice (Kolade Salami and Folorunsho Olabisi as Nos. 37 and 38),” the government said.
Aside from dismissing the findings that nine persons were killed, the government said it disagreed with the submission that hospitals treated victims of gunshot wounds from Lekki tollgate on the night of the shooting.
In the wake of reactions that trailed the leaked panel report, PRNigeria has reported how the Panel contradicted forensic evidence in a testimony by the Lagos State Chief Pathologist, Prof John Oladapo Obafunwa, in its report.
The Chief Pathologist was quoted on page 288 of the 309-page work to have stated that ‘‘deaths of three cases came about at the Lekki but their identities of the dead were unknown,” but the panel in its report went ahead on page 288 to posit that Obafunwa’s testimony “revealed death from bleeding caused by penetrating objects or rifled weapon.”
The Lagos state Government confirms this report in its Whitepaper when it stated that based on Prof Obafunwa’s testimony, “only three of the bodies that they conducted post-mortem examination on were from Lekki and only one had gunshot injury and this was not debunked.”
“The JPI’s finding of nine deaths is therefore irreconcilable with the evidence of Prof. Obafunwa that only one person died of ganshot wounds at 7:43pm at LTG on 21st October 2020.
“Having held that there was no evidence before it to the contrary of what Prof Obafunwa said. The question is where did the JPI then get its finding of nine deaths?,” it queried.
Similarly, PRNigeria has reported inconsistencies and contradictions in names and and given accounts which also aligned with the position of the Lagos State Government when it also said that names like Nathaniel Solomon, who was listed as the 46th victim of the Lekki incident, testified as a witness and petitioned the panel in respect of his brother whom he alleged died at Lekki tollgate, but the petitioner himself was listed as having died at the tollgate on October 20, last year.
In other reports, PRNigeria had revealed that video footage from the alleged Lekki Toll Gate incident along with witness submissions from Sentinel Forensics Ltd, a Forensic expert engaged by the Lagos Judicial Panel of Inquiry did not prove allegations in support of alleged killings in the report.
Similarly, a United Kingdom based medical forensics and ballistic expert Dieye Tonye Willie-Harry has berated both local and international media organizations for being unable to provide evidence to back up claims of massacre at the Lekki Toll Gate incidence.
Mr. Willie-Harry who is the Director of Oxygene Consulting UK Limited while testifying at the Justice Doris Okowubi (rtd) led Lagos State Panel of Inquiry on Restitution for Victims of SARS Related Abuses and Other Matters had on page 268 of the Panel report confirmed that contrary to widespread media coverage, all forensic investigations of media contents undertaken by his company did not prove direct shooting of unarmed civilians by the Nigerian Army.
Dubbed “Lekki Massacre” PRNigeria had from the outset, based on investigations and known evidence, reported that the incident which occurred on October 20, 2020 is fraught with a lot of misinformation, disinformation and fake news to which a lot of reputable local and International Media Organizations were found culpable of paddling, including CNN itself and the British Broadcasting Corporation, BBC.