Lagos Confirms Mass Burial for #EndSARS Victims, Says None from Lekki Tollgate

The Lagos Statement has confirmed mass burial for over 100 corpses, all Victims of the #EndSARS protest of 2020.

Lagos State government which made the confirmation in a statement released by Dr Olusegun Ogboye, Permanent secretary, Ministry of Health on July 23, this year, however, stated that the corpses were not from Lekki Tollgate as claimed by those it described as mischievous elements.

“The attention of the Lagos State Government has been drawn to some social media publications about a purported mass burial plan for casualties of the 2020 #EndSARS incident.

Peddlers of the news are deliberately misinterpreting and sensationalizing a letter from the Lagos State Government Public Procurement Agency titled: Letter of No Objection – Mass Burial for the 103, the Year 2020 ENDSARS victims, to misinform the public, stir public sentiment and cause public disaffection against the Lagos State Government.

“While the Lagos State Government would not have dignified the mischievous elements peddling such news with a response, we consider it appropriate to set the records straight and draw the attention of well-meaning citizens to the antics of some unscrupulous elements who are hell bent on disrupting the peace and tranquility of Lagos with distorted news and half-truth about the PPA letter”, Lagos State government stated.

The statement added that it was public knowledge that the year 2020 #EndSARS crisis that snowballed into violence in many parts of Lagos recorded casualties in different areas of the State and not from the Lekki Tollgate as being inferred in what it described as “mischievous publications”.

“For the records, the Lagos State Environmental Health Unit (SEHMU) picked up bodies in the aftermath of #EndSARS violence and community clashes at Fagba, Ketu, Ikorodu, Orile, Ajegunle, Abule-Egba, Ikeja, Ojota, Ekoro, Ogba, Isolo and Ajah areas of Lagos State, including a jailbreak at Ikoyi Prison. The 103 casualties mentioned in the document were from these incidents and NOT from Lekki Toll-gate as being alleged.

For the avoidance of doubt, no body was retrieved from the Lekki Toll Gate incident”, it said, adding “In the aftermath of the #EndSARS violence, the office of the Chief Coroner invited members of the public Throughout public adverts and announcement who had lost loved ones or whose relatives had been declared missing between 19th and 27th October 2020 from various clashes as mentioned above, to contact the department of Pathology and Forensic Medicine of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) to help with identification of these casualties deposited in State-owned morgues.

“The government stated that though relatives of victims were to undergo DNA tests for identification purposes, yet nobody responded to claim any of the bodies.

It noted that after almost three years, the bodies remained unclaimed, adding to the congestion of the morgues. This, it explained, spurred the need to decongest the morgues, a procedure it claimed, followed very careful medical and legal guidelines in the event that a relative might still turn up to claim a lost relative years after the incident.

“Decongestion of our public morgues is a periodic and regular exercise approved by Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to free up space in mortuaries that have a large number of unclaimed bodies.” Lagos State government stated.