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ENDSARS

FG reacts to CNN report, describes Lekki shooting as massacre without bodies

The Minister of Information has described CNN’s reports on Lekki shootings as massacre without bodies.

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FG reacts to CNN report, describes Lekki shooting as massacre without bodies, Lai Mohammed, 5G Network, Capacity building key to Tourism growth in Nigeria - Lai Mohammed

The Federal Government has insisted that the military men did not shoot at #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Tollgate, describing the alleged mass killings as a massacre without bodies.

This follows a recent investigative report by US-based media, Cable News Network (CNN), in which they published a video, allegedly showing Nigerian soldiers shooting at unarmed protesters at the Lekki Tollgate, based on video evidence from mobile phones of witnesses.

READ: ICPC moves against NDDC top management over corruption allegations, quizzes directors

According to a report by Channels Television, this was disclosed by the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed on Thursday, November 19, 2020, at a press conference in Abuja.

The CNN said that contrary to the submission by the army that blank bullets were fired at the protesters, their investigative report revealed that live were fired directly at the protesters at the Lekki Tollgate.

READ: #EndSARS: CCTV footage from day of Lekki shootings played at Judicial Panel

While referring to the CNN report as promoting a baseless and preconceived narrative, Mohammed said that the media organization relied on social media video evidence without verification

The minister criticized CNN’s report on the Lekki incident describing it as blatantly irresponsible.

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READ: FAAN denies allegation of stolen N750 million, admits breach of procurement process

He said that the mainstream media should confirm the veracity of footage used before airing and also pointed out that the government will work with stakeholders to curb fake news on social media.

Going further, Mohammed said that those who were saying that there was an alleged massacre at the Tollgate only succeeded in misleading the world. He said anyone that has a contrary proof that the army shot at protesters or there was a massacre at Lekki Tollgate, should make them available to the panel investigating the matter.

Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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    Business News

    Lekki Tollgate Shooting: US says security forces shot in the air, no information on fatalities

    The U.S Government has said that the Nigerian security forces fired shots into the air to disperse #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate.

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    Victims of #EndSARS protest receive interest free loans worth N10.5 million, #EndSARS: A day by day timeline of the protest that has brought Nigeria to its knees.

    The United States Government has said that the Nigerian security forces fired shots into the air to disperse #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate in Lagos on October 20, 2020.

    This contradicts allegations from media reports that some eyewitnesses saw soldiers firing live ammunition at the peaceful protesters.

    This disclosure is contained in the 2020 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Nigeria released by the US Department of State on Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

    The report pointed out that there was no accurate information on the number of fatalities from the shootings contrary to Amnesty International’s report that 10 people died during the incident as a result of gunshot wounds.

    READ: Lagos State police says no protest happened at Lekki Tollgate, describes viral video as fake

    What the report on Human Rights Practices on Nigeria is saying

    The report partly reads, “On Oct. 20, members of the security forces enforced curfew by firing shots into the air to disperse protesters, who had gathered at the Lekki Toll Gate in Lagos to protest abusive practices by the Nigerian Police Force’s Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

    Accurate information on fatalities resulting from the shooting was not available at year’s end.

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    Amnesty International reported 10 persons died during the event, but the government disputed Amnesty’s report, and no other organisation was able to verify the claim.

    READ: Lekki shooting: LCC video footage shows soldiers arriving in several trucks

    The government reported two deaths connected to the event. One body from the toll gate showed signs of blunt force trauma.

    A second body from another location in Lagos State had bullet wounds. The government acknowledged that soldiers armed with live ammunition were present at the Lekki Toll Gate.”

    What you should know

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    • It can be recalled that in the aftermath of the alleged shooting of #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki Tollgate, US-based media outfit, Cable News Network (CNN), in its investigate report, aired a video allegedly showing Nigerian soldiers shooting at unarmed protesters at the tollgate, based on video evidence from mobile phones and witnesses.
    • The Federal Government in its response insisted that the military did not shoot at the #EndSARS protesters, describing the alleged mass killings as a massacre without bodies.
    • Also, President Muhammadu Buhari, while expressing his disgust at the coverage of the incident by foreign media organisations like CNN and BBC, said that their reports on the EndSARS protests were not balanced.

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    Business

    ICPC Chairman reveals #EndSARS protests was financed with cryptocurrency

    ICPC Chairman has revealed to the Nigerian Senate that the #EndSARS protest was largely funded with cryptocurrency.

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    School feeding, ICPC, FIRS moves to stop tax evasion with newly launched intelligence system 

    The Chairman of Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Commission (ICPC), Bolaji Owasanoye has revealed to the Nigerian Senate that the #EndSARS protest was largely funded with cryptocurrency.

    This is as he said there are strong indications that it could be used to fund Insurgency in the country.

    According to a report from Vanguard, this disclosure was made by the ICPC Chairman, during an interactive session with Senate Joint Committee on Banking, ICT, Cybercrime and Capital Market led by Senator Uba Sani on Tuesday, February 23, 2021.

    READ: ICPC uncovers N9.8 billion Government money hidden in Aso Savings

    The Joint committee was mandated to look at the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to ban Cryptocurrency in Nigeria.

    The ICPC boss while supporting the position of the CBN, said that the nature of operations of Cryptocurrency exposes it to money laundering and terrorism financing.

    Meanwhile, the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) has said that the agency averted a $3million fraud linked to 20 bank accounts.

    READ: ICPC moves against NDDC top management over corruption allegations, quizzes directors

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    Owasanoye further explained that the anti-graft agency currently has a number of cases linked to Cryptocurrency but is unable to track the suspects.

    He brought the attention of the Senate to a period in 2018 when a number of globally rated financial institutions said their financial statements had been hacked with the perpetrators asking to be paid in Cryptocurrencies.

    ICPC Chairman noted that the CBN as a regulator has the responsibility to ensure sound financial stability and it will be difficult to achieve in the case of Cryptocurrencies where the players are anonymous.

    While sharing the experience of the Indian Supreme Court and how it ruled and admitted that it does not know what it is, he urged the Lawmakers to as a matter of urgency, take decisive action against Cryptocurrencies.

    READ: Most powerful financial leader takes side with CBN, says Bitcoin is untrustworthy

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    What you should know

    • It can be recalled that the CBN had directed the financial institutions to immediately close the accounts of such persons or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges, warning of severe regulatory sanctions in the event of any breach of the directive.
    • The apex bank warned the Deposit Money Banks, Non-Financial Institutions and other Financial Institutions against doing business in crypto and other digital assets.
    • The latest directive is coming after the CBN had in 2018 stated that cryptocurrencies are not legal tender and as such are illegal.

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