Mr Tinubu, describes himself as an “unapologetic protester” and says he’s ready for inquiries on the incident.

A former governor of Lagos State, Bola Tinubu, has denied any involvement in the Tuesday shooting of #EndSARS protesters by some soldiers in Lagos.

The shooting has attracted global outrage against the Nigerian authorities.

Several allegations have been made against Mr Tinubu, a national leader of the All Progressives Congress, regarding the incident, with some people saying, without proof, that he “ordered” the shooting just to show his loyalty to President Muhammadu Buhari.

Some business concerns linked to Mr Tinubu, including The Nation newspaper and a television station, TVC, have been attacked in Lagos by hoodlums whose motives remain unclear.

“I will never be part of any carnage. The use of live ammunition (against the protesters) is condemnable in totality,” Mr Tinubu said in an interview aired on Wednesday morning by Channels TV.

Tinubu follows claims and reports that his interest and involvement in the shooting that took place on Tuesday is based on the fact that he was making money of the tollgate, a source of income that was crippled following days of the #EndSARS protest.

In a telephone interview with Channels Television, the All Progressives Congress (APC) stalwart said, ““I have no dime, no kobo investment in the tollgate”.

He also denied having any investment in the Lekki Concession Company, the firm which manages the tollgate.

He said he did not “order” the shooting of the protesters. “There is a limitation here, I can only control my personal security guards,” he said.

Mr Tinubu was interviewed via telephone by a Channels TV reporter, Olu Philips.

He said he was “extremely shocked” when he heard about the shooting and that he was ready to “complain to the highest level”.

“It is early hours of the morning, there’s no way I can talk to the authorities or wake them up now. I have tried to reach the NSA, I have tried to reach the head of the army.

“You don’t call the president at this hour, but I strongly condemn the act. There are other means of settling or dispersing protest. Why would they use live bullets? There are rubber bullets,” Mr Tinubu said.

Mr Tinubu denied having any business interest in the Lekki Toll Gate where the shooting took place.

The APC chieftain said he was accused and reported to the presidency that he was behind the protests.

He said their are still claims that it was him who sponsor of the protesters.

According to Tinubu, it was his intervention that that spurred Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to respond to the demands of the protesters.

“That was why he (Sanwo-Olu) set up the Judicial Commission of Inquiry. The governor has gone to the home of one of the victims to appeal to them.

“He has put N200m together as part of restitution and compensation for those attacked.”

Earlier on Tuesday, Tinubu cautioned protesters against giving the impression that they wanted to cause anarchy.

He warned that “any government will necessarily have to act with the requisite decisiveness and force to restore law and order” if it is convinced that chaos is the purpose of any protest organized

However, an advertising company owned by Mr Tinubu’s son, Oluseyi, owns an electronic billboard at the Lekki Toll Plaza.

Protesters who survived the incident said light in the area, including the billboard, was turned off before the shooting.

The advertising company, however, said it deactivated its facility in compliance with the curfew declared by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, unaware that tragedy would later struck at the location.

The former governor, Mr Tinubu said when the #EndSARS protests were going on in Lagos, people falsely accused him of being behind it and reported him to the presidency.

He expressed sympathy for the victims of the incident and advised the federal government to “fish out whoever gave the order (for the shooting) and put them on trial”.

He said the government has been slow in bringing to justice officers of SARS whose unlawful actions caused the protests in the first place.

He, however, said he did not believe President Muhammadu Buhari authorised the shooting.

“I am not even sure yet they are Nigerian army, I am not sure how well the uniforms of the army are controlled. But that is not as critical as the bloodshed that has occurred,” he said.

Mr Tinubu, who described himself as an “unapologetic protester”, appealed for calm. He said he was ready to “face all inquiries” over the incident.

President Buhari is yet to address the nation over the incident.

“We have lost our sleep, we have lost our peace of mind, (and) we just have to deal with it,” Mr Tinubu added.

 

Watch the video here: 

 


Leave a Reply