Buratai ordered trainee soldiers to be deployed to Lekki, general tells panel

Tukur Buratai

Commander of 81 Military Intelligence Brigade, Victoria Island, Lagos Brig.- Gen. Ahmed Taiwo said on Saturday that the Chief of Army Staff Lt.- Gen. Tukur Buratai ordered the deployment of soldiers undergoing training at military schools to Lekki on October 20 due to the shortage of troops.

Taiwo gave his testimony before the judicial panel probing the shooting of #EndSARS protesters by men in military uniform.

Taiwo said because “the 81 Division was short of troops, the Chief of Army Staff gave an extraordinary order that all Army schools should be shut down and everybody should be brought to the operation.”

He said incidentally he had only a day before, as an examiner of the Nigerian Army Intelligence, taught the trainee soldiers about internal security techniques, adding that he pointed out to them on the operation day how it was unbelievable that only a day after learning the rules, they were going for an operation in internal security.

Taiwo insisted that troops neither shot at nor killed any of the # EndSARS protesters at the tollgate, saying only expended bullets were used.

He said this was despite that “hoodlums came to challenge the soldiers and started pelting them with stones and bottles.”

“Blank expended ammunition contains only gunpowder, which just makes noise and a flash,” he said.