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Lekki Tollgate Shooting: LCC Submits Footage, Says Camera Stopped Recording At 8pm



Managing Director of the Lekki Concession Company, Abayomi Omomuwasan, has submitted video footage recorded by the company’s surveillance camera on the night of October 20, when soldiers opened fire on #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki tollgate area in Lagos State.

He submitted the footage on Tuesday at the 4th sitting of the panel of Inquiry and Restitution set up by the state government to look into the allegations of brutality and high-handedness by personnel of the now-defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

The reports have further been complicated by reports that the surveillance cameras at the tollgate had been removed hours before the shooting of October 20.

It was also widely reported that the lights at the toll gate were switched off minutes before the shooting happened, aiding the incident.

However, the LCC has since come out to deny any involvement or connivance.

Omomuwasan, however, noted that the surveillance cameras had stopped recording at about 8:00 pm, stressing;

I can confirm that inside here is the video footage that our surveillance camera was able to record for the 20th of October.

The MD of LCC said the surveillance cameras are called PTZ; wherein P enables the camera pan; T enables the camera tilt, and Z allows the camera to zoom. He noted that they were mounted on a mast at the tollgate.

Omomuwansa said the cameras were initially not tampered with — not until around 8pm when they stopped recording. The shooting was said to have started around 7pm.

He expressed;

I can confirm categorically that we never ever tampered with that surveillance cameras. That’s why we can still get the footage. Until 8 o’clock when it was tampered with and we couldn’t get any footage anymore.

The judicial panel had visited the tollgate where the LCC assured it that the recording from its closed-circuit television system (CCTV) on the night of the incident was intact.

The company had also said the power outage on the night of the shooting was because its staff were withdrawn from office locations; hence they could not switch on backup generators when power was interrupted.

Nearly two weeks after the incident, investigations are still ongoing to determine what really happened at the scene of the peaceful protests and who was responsible for the shootings.

The Nigerian Army has insisted that soldiers did not shoot at the protesters, despite viral videos showing men in military uniforms firing the shots.

Although they admitted that soldiers were deployed to ‘restore normalcy’ in the area, the Acting Deputy Director, 81 Division, Army Public Relations, Osoba Olaniyi, in a statement last Tuesday, described reports of a massacre by the officers as “untrue, unfounded, and aimed at causing anarchy in the country”.

Olaniyi also stated that the decision to involve the military was taken by the Lagos State Government after a 24-hour curfew was imposed.

Although the curfew was to commence at 4:00 pm that day, but later shifted to commence for 9:00 pm, many were still seen protesting across the state.

At the Lekki tollgate which had been one of the major converging points, peaceful and unarmed protesters were also still seen gathered in large numbers at the time.

The situation, however, took a turn for the worse around 7:00 pm when the security operatives stormed the area and started shooting sporadically.

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