Fashola raises panel of enquiry over destruction of BRT buses by soldiers

The tribunal is to inquire into whether the act was committed by soldiers and if they did not, who did it and also unravel how and why the military officer died.

The Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Fashola, on Monday, set up a tribunal to investigate the issue leading to the destruction of at least eight BRT buses by men of the Nigerian Army along the Ikorodu Road in Lagos.
Some yet unidentified soldiers had on July 4 went on rampage molesting BRT bus drivers and burning and damaging buses valued at over N100 million after a soldier allegedly riding a motor bike on the dedicated BRT lane was hit and killed.

A retired Judge of the Lagos High Court, Justice Ebenezer Adebajo, is heading the tribunal, which has 60 days to submit its report.

Other members are Lagos-based lawyer, Nurudeen Ogbara, Jude Igbanoi and Oluwadamilola Kessington.

Despite eyewitnesses’ accounts, the army denied that soldiers were responsible for the mayhem. The spokesperson for the Nigerian Army, Olajide Olaleye, insisted at the time that street urchins, commonly referred to as “area boys”, were responsible for the destruction.

“Desirous of getting to the root of the recent face-off between men of the Armed Forces and a BRT driver on the accident on Ikorodu Road, in which a soldier lost his life, Governor Fashola, on Monday, inaugurated a tribunal of enquiry on the accident and subsequent arson and destruction of the BRT buses, charging the tribunal to unravel the real and remote causes of the action,” Mr. Fashola said through a statement by his media aide, Hakeem Bello.

“The tribunal is to inquire into whether the act was committed by soldiers and if they did not, who did it and also unravel how and why the military officer died. Also, investigate what could have been done to avoid the incident,” the governor said.

“It will also be vital for the tribunal to provide answers into whether other people are behind the crisis. If Nigerians know what really happened, it will help to maintain the reputation of the military as well as cultivate the trust of Nigerians.”

Mr. Fashola, who expressed regret that a soldier died in the incident, said the army is a symbol of strength that has helped to restore peace in many international conflicts in Africa.

He however said the conducts of some soldiers have diminished the reputation of the army.


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