Human RightsNews

#EndSARS: Nigerians Plan #OccupyLekkiTollGate Protest Against Tollgate Reopening

Nigerians are planning to resume demonstrations in #OccupyLekkiTollgate protest, after the Lekki Tollgate in Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, was reopened to public disapproval.

Some Nigerians on social media have expressed readiness to stage another demonstration against the reopening of Lekki tollgate, the scene of the Oct. 20, 2020 shooting of #ENDSARS protesters.

On Tuesday, Oct. 20, personnel of the Nigerian Army allegedly shot at demonstrators protesting against the high-handedness of the now-disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) at the Lekki tollgate after Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Governor of Lagos State, had imposed a curfew the same day to contain the violence which had broken out in some parts of the state.

The shooting at the toll plaza led to its closure for about four months.

But on Saturday, the Lagos State Judicial Panel set up to look into the events of police brutality and the Lekki shooting, ordered the Lekki Concession Company (LCC), the firm operating the tollgate to reopen it, following a plea application by the company to allow it repair all the damages done to the facilities during the protest.

As Justice Doris Okuwobi ruled that the LCC be allowed to repossess the toll gate, four aggrieved members of the nine-man panel bickered over the ruling, arguing that it was “premature” to open the tollgate.

The dissenters added that the forensic examination report on the incident, which was slated for release last Tuesday, was yet to be disclosed.

Despite this, four other panel members who supported the reopening of the tollgate plaza insisted it must be reopened. ​They were Segun Awosanya (popularly known as Segalink), Oluwatoyin Odusanya (Director, Citizen’s Right), DIG Taiwo Lakanu ( representing the police) and Lucas Koyejo (from the National Human Rights Commission).

This, HumAngle gathered, has sparked outrage on social media as many young Nigerians consider the development a breach of trust by the panel set up to deliver justice to the victims of police brutality before and after the EndSARS protests.

“No to the reopening #Lekkitollgate, the perpetrators of #LekkiMassacre must be brought to book. @jidesanwoolu #Buratai must be brought before @IntlCrimCourt #RevolutionNow #Buharimustgo,” wrote Omoyele Sowore, publisher of Sahara Reporters.

Another Twitter user under, Deji Obadofin also wrote in support of the planned protest.

“Its exactly three months and eight days since peaceful protesters were sent to their early graves at the Lekki Tollgate, Yet no one is answering to the genocidal attacks. We won’t keep quiet. In an Unjust Society, Silence is a heinous crime.  Why won’t we #OccupyLekkiTollGate.”

Obikoya Adebowale, in his Twitter message, said “ We will not allow these government to brainwash us, we need justice for those heroes that sacrificed there lives at the Lekki massacre. Enough of this oppression and tyranny #OccupyLekkiTollGate.”


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Aishat Babatunde

Aishat Babatunde heads the digital reporting desk. Before joining HumAngle, she worked at Premium Times and Nigerian Tribune. She is a graduate of English from the University of Ibadan.

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