A spokesman of the Nigerian Army, Brigadier General Sani Usman (rtd), has revealed that blank bullets were used to disperse protesters at the Lekki Toll Gate on October 20.
POLITICS NIGERIA reports that President Muhammadu Buhari, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, and the Nigerian Army have come under criticism over the shooting of unarmed protesters by soldiers.
But in an interview on ARISE News on Thursday, Usman said that soldiers could not have used live bullets to disperse the protesters. The former Army spokesman added that blank bullets have little or no effect on its target.
He, however, said that the soldiers should be commended for using blank bullets otherwise there would have been serious collateral damage.
He said “If you look at the canisters, they were blank ammo and blank ammo don’t even kill. At a close range,l – maybe 100-metres – maybe it will have some pigmentation on your skin.
“Remember the military are armed and by the nature of their training, they are trained to kill and I think the military in its wisdom instead of using live ammunition decided to use blank ammunition which is meant for training.
“I think they should be commended for that otherwise there would have been serious collateral damage, but they were professional enough to have done that.”
Usman also condemned Amnesty International for accusing the Nigerian Army of killing the protesters. He said the human rights group has a long history of spuriously accusing the Nigerian military.