The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has condemned the shooting and killing of #ENDSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll Plaza in Lagos State by some
unidentified men of the Nigerian Military on Tuesday, 20th October 2020.
The NBA made this known in a statement on Tuesday signed by it’s National Chairman, Olumide AKPATA.
According to Akpata “….The NBA strongly condemns this act of recklessness and lawlessness by the security apparatus ofthe Government in what, based on reports available to us,appears to have been a carefully calculated and premeditated attack.”
He added that “….The NBAstates that even if the protesters at theLekki Toll Plaza were in breachofthe curfew
imposed by the Lagos State Government, such a misdemeanor or breach did not warrant the use oflive ammunitionbythe Nigerian militaryto confront otherwise peaceful,unarmedand defenseless protesters. To be clear, the events of today are events that we should never see or consider as normal in any democracy. ” He said.
The NBA made other demands including the immediate dismissal of Military men found culpable in the killings;
“Against the backdrop of this ugly development, the NBA wishes to state as follows:
- The military high command is hereby requested to immediately identify and name the officers involved in this gross professional misconduct for immediate prosecution and dismissal in line with extant laws.
- The NBA shall immediately commence legal proceedings at all relevant fora (both locally and internationally) against the Nigerian Military and other relevant
authorities, on behalf of the families of the victims, for abuse of power, disregard of rules of engagement and the infringement of the fundamental rights (including right to life) of the affected citizens.
- Given the degenerating nature of the crisis, an emergency meeting of the National Executive Committee (the highest decision-making body of the NBA) will be convened within the next 48 hours to review the state of the Nation and take other appropriate steps to decisively deal with the situation and prevent the nation from further going adrift. The NBA believes that the current situation in the country calls for dynamic leadership and, as critical stakeholders in the Nigerian project, invites the President of Nigeria and others in authority to show uncommon leadership in saving the situation, instead of deploying troops against defenseless citizens whom they swore an oath to protect”