The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) has backed the report of the Lagos State Judicial Panel of Inquiry on Restitution for the Victims of #EndSARS protest.
CDD in a statement issued on Sunday by its Director, Idayat Hassan, demanded full implementation of the report led by Justice Doris Okuwobi, warning against attempts to discredit the document.
The CDD said the necessity for a White Paper Report should not override the objective of addressing key social justice issues that the report sought to address, stating that the Lagos State Governor should know that this is a defining moment for his leadership.
“He should do well to publish the report and implement all the recommendations in it. At CDD, we reiterate that justice delay is justice denied, hence the necessity to expedite action on the report. The victims have waited a whole year. It is time to heal wounds and provide closure for the victims,” the group said.
“More importantly, the governor is being enjoined to be courageous and pitch his tent on the side of justice and for the people, in this case, irrespective of whether he was also challenged in the report or not. At this point in time, his integrity is highly needed. His government must implement the full report in order to balance the trust deficit that currently exists between the government and the public.”
The CDD noted that it is satisfied with the process, outcome, and recommendations of the panel, saying the report “reflects high-level impartiality and genuine attempt to deliver justice and closure for the victims of police brutality and SARS in the country.”
“The leaked 309-page report, which has been trending in the news, indicted the Police, the Army, Lekki Concession Company, and Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, indicating that there was “contextual massacre” at Lekki Toll Gate on October 20, 2020, contrary to official denials, stating that at least there was killing, injuring, and or assaulting of 48 protesters by soldiers and police in the incident,” the statement read.
According to the group, opposition claims need incontrovertible proof before they can be taken seriously.
It equally warned the government not to “miss this important opportunity to rebuild trust and provide closure for the victims of police brutality and SARS in the country.”
Last Monday, the judicial panel submitted its report to the Lagos State Government with Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu setting up a four-member committee led by Lagos State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN) to raise a White Paper on the reports submitted by the panel.