A forensic expert from Sentinel Forensics Ltd, Joseph Kayode, has told the Lagos Judicial Panel of Inquiry in the investigation of the Lekki tollgate shooting incident that the samples of ammunition presented by the Nigerian Army are of the same calibre as those retrieved at the scene.
Mr Kayode gave this explanation on Friday while giving the ballistic report of the forensic investigation conducted on the ammunition presented by the Nigerian Army and those at the panel.
The Nigerian Army, represented by Ibrahim Taiwo, the Commander of 81 Division, had earlier told the panel that soldiers fired only blank bullets at Lekki tollgate to disperse protesters on the night of October 20, last year.
At another appearance before the panel, the army said they went to Lekki tollgate on October 20 with both blank and live ammunition.
Mr Taiwo presented samples of blank ammunition and live ammunition to the panel, insisting that the soldiers fired only blank ammunition.
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Meanwhile, members of the judicial panel on October 30, last year visited the scene of the lekki shooting incident, where about six bullet shells were recovered from the scene 10 days after.
Both the exhibits recovered by the panel and those presented by the Nigerian Army were presented to the forensic team for ballistic investigation.
Giving a summary of the report on Friday, Mr Kayode said the bullet shells recovered by the judicial panel and the live ammunition presented by the Nigerian Army are of the same calibre.
“The live ammunition presented by the Nigerian Army is of the core calibre as the cartridge casings submitted by the Judicial Panel.
“While the blank ammunition submitted by the Nigerian Army is not of the same calibre as the cartridge casing submitted by the Judicial Panel. The blank ammunition submitted by the Nigerian Army is not designed to be fired by rifles chambered to 7.62x39mm,” the report holds.
The counsels to the Lagos State government, #EndSARS protesters, and the NBA are yet to cross-examine the expert.
The chairperson of the judicial panel, Doris Okuwobi, adjourned the matter till September 11.