No fatalities were recorded but at least 25 people were wounded in a shooting on protesters who defied a curfew in Lagos, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said Wednesday.
“We are comforted that we have not recorded any fatality, as against the widespread circulation on social media,” the governor said, adding that he had ordered an investigation into “the rules of engagement employed by the men of the Nigerian army that were deployed to Lekki tollgate (the epicentre of the demonstration) last night”.
Amnesty International had earlier said that “several” demonstrators were killed in the shooting, while there has been no independent confirmation of the death toll.
“Several people were killed by security forces. We are working on verifying how many,” Amnesty spokesman Isa Sanusi said, after armed men fired on a crowd of around 1,000 people still gathered after the curfew at Lekki tollgate.
The Nigerian army did not respond to AFP requests for comment but branded reports of soldiers shooting on protesters as “fake news” on Twitter.
Flags will be flown at half mast and Sanwo-Olu announced a three-day suspension of all “state activities” apart from security matters and “management of current issues”.
“I am with you. I feel the pain. And I understand that you are not happy, with the turn of events from last night,” the governor added, appealing to protesters “to give peace a chance.”