The Federal Authorities insisted on Thursday that there was no bloodbath when troopers dispersed the #EndSARS protesters at Lekki Tollgate, Lagos, on October 20, 2020.
The Minister of Data and Tradition, Lai Mohammed, stated this at a press convention in Abuja.
Mohammed attributed the accounts of the bloodbath to these he described as offering false information.
The minister stated: “Whereas we look ahead to the judicial panel in Lagos to seek out out what occurred at Lekki Tollgate, what we will say, based mostly on the testimonies out there within the public area, is that the world might have simply witnessed, for the primary time ever , a bloodbath with out our bodies!
“Some referred to as it a ‘social media bloodbath’. The testimony of Brigadier-Normal Ahmed Ibrahim Taiwo, of the Nigerian Military, earlier than the panel was convincing, and I’m positive that a lot of you’ve heard or watched. “
Mohammed insisted that troopers on the tollbooth threw empty ammunition into the air that would not have brought about any injury.
The minister stated: “Sadly, the suppliers of false information and misinformation have managed to deceive the world that, in truth, there have been mass murders in Lekki, even when, up to now, not a single physique has been produced and no household or relative has appeared to say that your son or pupil was killed in Lekki.
“Extra shocking and irresponsible is the truth that some individuals have been asking for sanctions towards Nigeria or towards Nigerian authorities officers based mostly on a rip-off.
“We need to use this chance to ask those that allegedly bloodbath at Lekki Tollgate to go to the judicial panel to current their proof to the world or just admit that they have been flawed.”
FG fails CNN report, requires sanction
The minister additionally criticized the Cable Information Community report on the incident, describing it as “blatantly irresponsible”.
In saying that CNN did a horrible service to itself and to journalism, Mohammed requested for a sanction for the broadcasting group.
When requested, nevertheless, about the kind of sanction he’s recommending to a overseas group, the minister merely stated: “CNN has an inside mechanism, however we’ll do what is important on our half.”
He regretted that CNN, which he stated proclaimed his report as an unique investigative report, relied on the identical movies which were circulating on social media, with out verification, including that “that is very severe and CNN ought to be sanctioned for it” .
He added: “In its biased reviews, CNN didn’t discover that six troopers and 37 policemen have been killed in unprovoked assaults. Clearly, CNN didn’t think about human safety brokers sufficient.
“CNN, in its ‘investigation’, was blind to the rampant destruction of properties in Lagos and throughout the nation. As well as, CNN has not seen the burning of police stations and autos throughout the nation. As an alternative, he went into city with unchecked footage on social media, in his desperation to show that individuals have been killed at Lekki Tollgate.
“Once more, that is irresponsible journalism for which CNN deserves to be sanctioned.”
‘DJ Change, a entrance for divisive forces’
The minister additionally descended on common disc jockey Obianuju Udeh, also referred to as DJ Change, whom he accused of being on the forefront of spreading false information in regards to the incident.
He stated that as an alternative of presenting the genuine proof he had in regards to the alleged bloodbath to the judicial panel, she sought to flee the nation on the pretext that her life was at risk.
“Over time, this girl will likely be uncovered for what she is, a fraud and a facade for divisive and harmful forces,” added Mohammed.
The minister additionally justified the sanctions imposed on three media organizations by the Nationwide Broadcasting Fee for allegedly utilizing unverified and harmful data from social networks.
“The Federal Authorities’s place is that not solely have been the fines justified, however NBC was certainly lenient. It’s unhappy to see conventional media discarding the long-standing door upkeep course of and as an alternative rush to depend on free social media – devoid of any management – to get information, ”he stated.
Let’s regulate social networks
The minister famous that social networks had a unfavorable position within the violence that occurred after the protests.
This, he stated, strengthened the federal government’s marketing campaign towards false information and misinformation, which was launched in 2018.
He stated: “Pretend information / misinformation suppliers have clung to our issues to say that the Federal Authorities is planning to finish social media. No, we now have no plans to finish social media.