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Lekki Massacre: Fiction And Half Truths

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The morning after the night when protesters at Lekki tollgate were supposedly massacred by the Nigerian Army, the BBC Newshour program interviewed Governor Sanwoolu around 6 am in the morning about whether he invited the army and about who gave orders that unarmed protesters be shot dead.

The Governor confirmed that he invited the army but that they were supposed to arrive later than the time they came. He was asked whether he gave orders for the shooting of protesters to which he replied “I am not the C in C,” he also said the army does not take orders from him. He was then asked if he knew who the people that did the shooting were and he replied “from the videos I have seen, it was the army”.

Later when he gave his press briefing, apparently after having some intel) he came on tv to announce that there were no fatalities. Note also that the army had already tweeted “fake news” earlier in the day when social media was awash of videos of army in armoured tank, shooting sporadically in a direction and scores of videos of dead bodies with body parts littered on the floor had been spread as victims of Lekki massacre.

A certain DJ Switch has released several videos, one LIVE where she claimed that the military were killing protesters and that a lot of people have died and they were trying to remove a bullet from one person’s leg. She was relaying these events but not showing a single footage of the most important videos, A. Of dead bodies, B. Of the army shooting at people, C. Of blood stain on thee floor, D. Of the process/procedure when the bullet was removed, E. When the army were carrying the dead bodies, F. When DJ Switch and her people were carrying dead bodies and dumping them in front of the army (as she claimed).

Rather, she was verbalising the narrative she wanted to drive even though that was not what was happening. Then her second video showed her talking to a friend and all of a sudden she started running and asking imaginary people to bend down and hold their flags. His friend on the other hand then said “daaaamn” after which he covered his face as if he just witnessed something gruesome. This was acting and a bad one at that. DJ Switch gave an impression that the army or police were still shooting protesters at Lekki even in the morning. Then she said “they shot all night”.

Then she did another video where she apologised for not being online for some time. She then proceeded to reminisce about the faithful night and at that point, she started to address the issue of numbers. It was then the death toll of over 80 suddenly reduced to 12. She also claimed that the DJ Switch account which posted over 80 deaths was a fake account and not hers. I put it to you that if the digital footprint and registered details of that account was searched, it’ll show that it’s her account, but away from that, she started to narrate her ordeal and how police fired teargas and described it like “Cotonou pepper”.

Someone who has just been traumatised and witnessed a carnage few days earlier is making jokes about pepper? Body language experts have analysed that her behaviour is not commensurate with a victim of trauma and her description of how they carried dead bodies to go and deposit at the legs of the army defy logic. It’s fright or flight. The Nigerian Army opening fire and you taking dead bodies to their feet is highly unlikely. Now let’s go to the facts. Till today, there are no relatives that have come forward that their family members are missing. A woman in London claimed her son was killed at Lekki but it turned out it was a lie. Also pictures that was touted as victims of Lekki massacre turned out to be pictures of people who had died in separate circumstances one from a bike accident and one a stab wound victim. Those found in the hospitals who got injured from Lekki were as a result of stampede, and the injuries ranged from broken bones, cuts, bruises and slash wounds. No record of death as a result of gunshot wounds from Army weapon but social media was awash of people in hospital who claim they were shot by the army at Lekki. In reality there was chaos in parts of the area between people and the police and a lot of police men died and so did citizens of Lagos. To make matters worse, because of that lie by DJ Switch about a massacre, a lot of angry protesters came out of their homes and in their bid to retaliate by killing police officers or burning police stations, a lot of people got shot by police men and a lot of lives were lost needlessly. DJ Switch who was seemingly defiant in the eyes of death now suddenly disappear rather than bring her evidence to the commission of enquiry to help this investigation.

Now she’s trying to seek asylum under the guise of running for her life, but when she was confronted with gunshots by the army, she didn’t run away? That is a cue to show that this woman is an anarchist or a pathological liar. She was probably trying to trend or perhaps there is a more sinister angle into this.

Now regarding Nigeria media and the shameful way some media houses covered this story shows that NBC has to keep closer look into the licences of these media houses. Many of them showed unverified social media footage “as live” thereby misleading the audience. One newspaper wrote a piece titled “Sanwoolu finally admit inviting the military”. At no time did Governor Sanwoolu deny inviting the military. He said the military does not take orders from him. It was his interview with Becky Anderson on CNN (days after speaking with the BBC where he confirmed that he invited the army) that people saw and decided the governor “finally admitted” I suppose this is the same report that the army read for them to have said they are not happy the Governor denied inviting them.

CNN sadly and unprofessionally did a package where they attached social media videos to what could have been an educational piece of journalism. The satellite image showed the army leaving their base with two pick up cars. It showed them fire into the sky, but sadly the unverified social media videos attached to that package ruined it. It reeks of prejudice and bias.

CNN is desperate to show that the Nigerian government massacred young people and sadly they neglected their ethos. There was an image of an old man in native attire covered in blood. The question is that man must have a relative somewhere. The state government is prepared to give a compensation of 5 million Naira to anyone who can identify the man. Did the soldiers take his dead body away? And even if he is dead, who was he? He must have friends or family.

One important question to ask is that the same satellites image which showed the army drive to the toll gate should be able to show the army picking dead body up or dropping then into the carnal or at least there should be an image showing people on the floor dead as a result of a massacre. The government of Nigeria should hold CNN accountable. They must substantiate their claims.

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