The Nigerian Army has denied using live ammunition on unarmed #EndSARS protesters during the shooting which occurred at Lekki Tollgate on October 20.
Brig.-Gen. Ahmed Taiwo, Commander of the 81 Division, Military Intelligence Brigade, Victoria Island, Lagos, who testified on behalf of the Nigerian Army before the Lagos judicial panel on Saturday November 14, stressed that soldiers fired blank ammunition into the air to disperse protesters on the night of the alleged shooting.
Taiwo stated that there would have been a lot of fatalities if the 600m live ammunition normally used by the military were used to disperse the #EndSARS protesters.
“I have been in the army since 1986 and you cannot be under fire and be singing.
“The entry hole for the 600m is thin while the exit is wide, if it hits you in the chest or the bowels, the intestines come down.
“I am an expert in ammunition having spent so long in the army. Blank ammunition is slower and can do no damage to the flesh and you have nothing to fear except you take a rifle, put it against your eye and fire.
“Even if you put it against your skin and fire you will only have burn marks.”
Following his revelation, Taiwo through the counsel of the Nigerian Army, Mr Akinlolu Kehinde (SAN), presented four spent blank ammunition to the panel as evidence.
He also told the panel that there was a lapse in communication between the Lagos State Government and the Nigerian Army regarding the imposing and lifting of the curfew.
“Due to the urgency of the security situation in the state, the governor declared a 24-hour curfew which was supposed to start at 4pm.
“They wanted everyone off the streets to deal with the hoodlums, but after some observations the timing was shifted to 21:00 hours, but this timing was not communicated to the Nigerian Army.
“Be that as it may, we the Nigerian Army had already immediately deployed the 65 Battalion under the 81 Division Garrison to forestal all further violence and loss of lives.
“It is important to note that this deployment of troops contrary to reports, was done throughout Lagos to activate Phase 4 of the Internal Security Operations.”