The Federal Government on Thursday said the conduct of policemen and soldiers during the #ENDSARS protests and the attendant violence deserves commendation and not condemnation.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed who stated this in Abuja during a televised press conference, said government was satisfied with the roles played by the military, police, and other security agencies during the #EndSARS protests.
The minister also lamented that six soldiers and 37 policemen were killed during the “#EndSARS crisis”, adding that soldiers killed no protester at the Lekki toll gate in Lagos on October 20.
This is coming on the heels of several reports, with the latest being an investigative report by CNN that some protesters were killed and injured.
Mohammed, who insisted that the soldiers deployed to Lekki were professionals, said the reports indicating that protesters were killed relied on unverified facts from social media.
Arguing that soldiers and policemen deserve commendation not condemnation unless people would say their lives do not matter, Mohammed described as demoralising, reports stating that protesters were killed without stating attacks on security operatives and infrastructure by hoodlums.
He said: “We insist that the military did not shoot at the protesters at Lekki. They fired blank ammunition into the air. Anyone who knows anyone who was killed at Lekki toll gate should go straight to the judicial panel with evidence.
“At this point, it is important to say that the Federal Government is very satisfied with roles played by the security agencies, especially the military, and the police all through the EndSARS crisis. They were professional. Even when their lives were at stake, they exercised uncommon restraints. Their professionalism saved many lives and properties.”