Lord Alton of Liverpool – To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of reports that the Nigerian Armed Forces opened fire on peaceful protesters in Lagos; and what discussions they have had with the government of Nigeria about referring CCTV footage of those events to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights for independent verification.
Baroness Sugg – The UK Government is deeply concerned by the violence during protests in major cities in Nigeria, including reports of casualties in Lekki, Lagos, on 20 October. We offer our condolences to the families of those affected.
The Foreign Secretary issued a statement on 21 October calling for an end to the violence and for the Nigerian Government to urgently investigate reports of brutality by its security forces. The Minister for Africa tweeted on 16 October, noting the Nigerian people’s democratic and peaceful calls for reforms, and again on 21 October, encouraging the Nigerian authorities to restore peace and address concerns over brutality towards civilians. He reiterated these messages when he spoke with Foreign Minister Onyeama on 23 October. The British High Commissioner in Abuja and the Deputy High Commissioner in Lagos continue to raise the protests with representatives of the Nigerian Government. We will continue to push the Nigerian police to uphold human rights and the rule of law in all operations. We will also continue to urge the Nigerian authorities to investigate allegations of police brutality, illegal detentions and assaults, and hold those responsible to account.
The UK Government have received reassurances from the Lagos State Government that the CCTV cameras were not removed from the site and that the CCTV footage will be made available to the Judicial Panel of Enquiry and Restitution in Lagos State for investigation. We will continue to follow the proceedings of the Judicial Panel closely.