President Muhammadu Buhari said he is waiting for the actions taken by the state governments before he would act on the reports of the judicial panels of enquiry set up by states.
Buhari stated this following the report by the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on the shooting incident that occurred last year during the #EndSARS protest at the Lekki Toll Gate.
KanyiDaily had reported how soldiers opened fire on #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki toll gate, on Tuesday night, October 21, 2020, killing an unconfirmed number of persons and injuring so many others.
According to the 309-page report submitted by the Lagos Judicial Panel on Monday, November 15, 2021, nine protesters were confirmed dead while four others were presumed dead.
The report listed 48 names as those who were casualties of the Lekki shooting incident. Among which, 24 sustained gunshot injuries, while 15 others were assaulted by soldiers and police.
The panel which was headed by Justice Doris Okuwobi, also noted that 96 other corpses were presented by a Forensic Pathologist of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Professor John Obafunwa.
The report indicted the Nigerian Police and Army for killing “unarmed helpless and defenseless protesters, without provocation or justification, while they were waving the Nigerian Flag and singing the National Anthem” at the Lekki Toll Gate.
Buhari Reacts To EndSARS Panel Reports
Speaking on Thursday at a meeting with Antony Blinken, United States secretary of state, in Abuja, Buhari said state governments will have to take steps on the reports of their panels, before the federal government acts on the recommendations.
Buhari in a statement by Femi Adesina, presidential spokesman said “So many state governments are involved, and have given different terms of reference to the probe panels.
“We at the federal have to wait for the steps taken by the states, and we have to allow the system to work. We can’t impose ideas on them. Federal government has to wait for the reaction of the states.”
The US secretary of state described the report of the #EndSARS probe panel as “democracy in action”, and said he looks forward to necessary reforms within security agencies.
Speaking on the removal of Nigeria from countries violating religious freedom, Buhari said his administration remains committed to freedom of worship, adding that “no one is discriminated against on the basis of his or her faith”.
He also expressed his appreciation to the US for its support in the sale of military weapons to Nigeria to fight insecurity.
“It’s helping us to stabilise the situation in the north-east, and we’ve made a lot of progress since 2015. We are doing a lot on security, and the people involved appreciate our efforts,” he said.
Meanwhile, the House of Reps Minority Caucus has called for the immediate resignation of the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, for lying about the killing of unarmed #EndSARS protesters at Lekki Toll Gate.