The Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo (SAN) has described as illegal the judicial panel of inquiry set up to investigate cases of police brutality and SARS-related abuses across the country.
Naija News reports that the senior lawyer faulted the report by the Lagos judicial panel which has drawn controversy and mixed reactions.
“I will not answer this question as a sitting minister,” he said on Channels TV’s Sunday Politics, adding; “I will answer this question as a Senior Advocate of Nigeria and so, I am entitled to my own opinion. This is not the Federal Government’s position.
“For me, that panel was an illegal panel”.
Recall that the EndSARS panel led by Justice Doris Okuwobi had submitted its report to the state government accusing police officers deployed to the Lekki tollgate of shooting and assaulting unarmed protesters.
According to the report released by the panel the protesters at the tollgate on the 20th of October, 2020, were attacked by security operatives which led to injuries and deaths.
The panel further stated that police officers at the scene of the protest tried to cover up their actions by picking up bullets.
The report reads, “The panel found that the Nigerian Police Force deployed its officers to the Lekki tollgate on the night of the 20th October 2020 and between that night and the morning of the 21st of October, 2020, its officer shot at, assaulted and battered unarmed protesters, which led to injuries and deaths.
“The police officers also tried to cover up their actions by picking up bullets.”
The panel recommended to the state government that some policemen should be prosecuted for arbitrary and indiscriminate shooting and killing of protesters.
A committee set up by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State is expected to raise a White Paper on the reports by the Judicial Panel in Lagos and submit its recommendations to the National Economic Council (NEC) for discussion and possible implementation.