Buildings have been set aflame and there are stories of gunfire in Nigeria’s largest metropolis after demonstrators have been shot at a protest.
Rights group Amnesty Worldwide mentioned no less than 12 individuals have been killed by troopers and police in Lagos on Tuesday.
Nigeria’s military dismissed the stories as “pretend information” in a put up on Twitter.
Authorities have imposed an indefinite round the clock curfew on the town and elsewhere, however some defied the order.
Protests towards a police unit have been going down for 2 weeks. Demonstrators have been utilizing the social media hashtag #EndSars to rally crowds towards the Particular Anti-Theft Squad (Sars).
President Muhammadu Buhari disbanded Sars on 11 October. However protests have continued, with calls for for extra adjustments within the safety forces, in addition to reforms to the way in which the nation is run.
Witnesses have advised the BBC what they noticed when males in navy camouflage opened hearth on Tuesday night.
Nigerian horror over #EndSars protest shootings
- In footage: Nigeria’s Finish Sars protests
On Wednesday, buildings have been set alight throughout Lagos and police put up roadblocks. A serious Nigerian TV station with hyperlinks to a ruling get together politician was on hearth after individuals attacked it with petrol bombs.
Police in numerous districts of the town fired pictures within the air to disperse protesters defying the curfew, the BBC’s Nduka Orjinmo stories from the capital, Abuja. He additionally stories that the palace of essentially the most senior conventional chief within the metropolis was looted, although the chief had been evacuated beforehand.
What occurred in Lagos?
Witnesses mentioned uniformed males opened hearth on a crowd of round 1,000 demonstrators within the rich Lekki suburb on Tuesday.
Troopers have been seen barricading the protest web site moments earlier than the taking pictures, BBC Nigeria correspondent Mayeni Jones stories. Social media footage streamed reside from the scene exhibits protesters tending to the wounded.
A witness who didn’t need to be named advised BBC Information that shortly earlier than 19:00 native time (18:00 GMT) troopers “pulled up… they usually began firing straight” at peaceable protesters.
“They have been firing they usually have been advancing straight at us. It was chaos. Someone received hit straight beside me and he died on the spot,” he mentioned.
The protesters had gathered on the Lekki toll gate for the final two weeks to dam automobiles from utilizing the street.
Shortly earlier than a curfew was on account of begin, officers turned up and commenced to kettle within the demonstrators. The road lights have been then shut off earlier than the taking pictures started.
In an announcement, Amnesty Worldwide Nigeria mentioned no less than 12 protesters have been killed in Lagos on Tuesday.
Proof from hospital data and witnesses confirmed “the Nigerian navy opened hearth on 1000’s of people that have been peacefully calling for good governance and an finish to police brutality” at Lekki toll gate, the organisation mentioned.
Aside from the taking pictures in Lekki, no less than two individuals have been killed and one “critically injured” within the Alausa district by “a workforce of troopers and policemen” at about 20:00, the group added.
“Troopers clearly had one intention – to kill with out penalties,” mentioned Osai Ojigho, Amnesty Worldwide Nigeria nation director.
Demonstrators defy the curfew in Lagos
By Mayeni Jones, BBC Nigeria Correspondent
This morning we drove over the Lekki-Ikoyi toll bridge, passing via gates that had been burned out the evening earlier than. Damaged glass from numerous companies was scattered on the ground, money machines burned out.
Nearer to Lekki, the place there are a selection of purchasing centres, the streets have been primarily empty. It is a bustling space often, however no automobiles have been on the street, simply younger males on foot.
On the Lekki toll gate itself there have been round 200 individuals, who crowded spherical us, wanting to inform their tales of the evening earlier than, indignant but in addition decided to face their floor. Swimming pools of blood might be seen on the ground.
Protesters have been waving flags that appeared lined in blood – they advised me that the Nigerian flag, often green-white-green, turned green-red-green yesterday from all of the killing. Lots of them had been on the web site of the taking pictures the evening earlier than and recounted horrifying tales of seeing different protesters shot earlier than their eyes.
The requires police reform have morphed into chants that President Buhari should go. Demonstrators say they’re sick and bored with the established order.
How have officers responded?
Lagos state governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu mentioned about 25 individuals had been wounded, including that authorities have been investigating the loss of life of 1 man by “blunt pressure trauma to the top”. It’s unclear if he was a demonstrator.
On Wednesday he known as for flags to be lowered at authorities buildings and an “rapid suspension” of all state actions over the subsequent three days.
“There aren’t any excuses for the unlucky incident that came about final evening, and because the governor, I apologize for each motion and inaction,” he tweeted.
Mr Sanwo-Olu advised the BBC’s Newshour programme that the navy had been current on the scene, regardless of public assurances that troopers wouldn’t deploy till after the beginning of a curfew at 21:00.
“I take into consideration seven o’clock or thereabouts there was a small unit of the navy that went [to Lekki] and we heard that gunshots have been fired,” he mentioned.
President Buhari didn’t straight check with the shootings in an announcement on Wednesday, however known as on individuals to have persistence as police reforms “collect tempo”, and appealed for “understanding and calm”.
What’s been the worldwide response?
Protests have taken place within the UK, South Africa and Kenya towards police brutality in Nigeria, whereas officers all over the world condemned Tuesday’s occasions.
EU overseas coverage chief Josep Borrell mentioned it was “alarming to study that a number of individuals have been killed and injured throughout the ongoing protests”, including it’s “essential” to convey these accountable to justice.
UN Secretary Normal Antonio Guterres known as on police “to behave always with most restraint whereas calling on protestors to exhibit peacefully and to chorus from violence”, his spokesman mentioned on Wednesday.
Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton known as on President Buhari and the military “to cease killing younger #EndSARS protesters” in a tweet.
And US Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden additionally urged authorities to finish the “violent crackdown on protesters”.