Brig.-Gen. Ahmed Taiwo, Commander of the 81 Division, Military Intelligence Brigade, Victoria Island, Lagos, who testified on behalf of the Nigerian Army said that the military had fired blank ammunition into the air to disperse protesters on the night of the alleged shooting.
Brig. General Taiwo, who gave a presentation to the panel with the use of a projector, played a footage which showed soldiers standing in front of singing protesters and firing their weapons into the air.
He said there would have been a lot of fatalities if the 600m live ammunition normally used by the military were used to disperse the #EndSARS protesters.
Taiwo said that troops had managed to disperse most of the #EndSARS protesters, and had even shared drinks from protesters who had remained at the Lekki Tollgate.
Following his revelation, Taiwo through the counsel of the Nigerian Army, Mr Akinlolu Kehinde (SAN), presented four spent blank ammunition to the panel as evidence.
“Due to the urgency of the security situation in the state, the governor declared a 24-hour curfew which was supposed to start at 4pm.
“They wanted everyone off the streets to deal with the hoodlums, but after some observations the timing was shifted to 21:00 hours, but this timing was not communicated to the Nigerian Army.
“Be that as it may, we the Nigerian Army had already immediately deployed the 65 Battalion under the 81 Division Garrison to forestal all further violence and loss of lives.
The officer told the panel that the Army had entered the Stabilisation Phase of the Internal Security Operations, and had started recovering looted items when the Lagos State Government lifted the curfew without informing them.
“We were still recovering a lot of looted items which were given back to the owners on production of receipt or proof of ownership.
“If the curfew was not lifted we would have recovered a 100 times more than the items we recovered,” Taiwo said.