Amnesty International Nigeria has urged the Lagos State government to halt plans for a mass burial of 103 people identified as victims of the #EndSARS demonstrations in October 2020.
In a statement sent to journalists on Monday, Isa Sanusi, Director of Amnesty International Nigeria, also tasked the government with conducting a comprehensive and independent investigation into the killings and ensuring that those accused of being guilty are brought to justice in fair trials.
The international organisation stated this in response to a recent leaked document from the Lagos State Government Public Procurement Agency, which revealed that it contacted a private burial home to bury 103 bodies tagged from the “Endsars” protest in which Nigerian youth participated.
Thousands of youth had converged on the streets across many parts of the country to demand an end to police brutality, and disbandment of the now defunct dreaded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigerian police.
The protests which disrupted activities, were however, infiltrated by hoodlums resulting in cases of violence recorded in many cities with many killed.
Responding to the leaked government memo, AI described the secret mass burial plan as appalling, noting that the Lagos state government did not mention that it has held the bodies of 103 #EndSARS victims in its custody since October 2020.
“The Nigerian authorities must urgently halt their plans to carry out a secret mass burial of #EndSARS victims and instead carry out a thorough and independent investigation into the killings and ensure that those suspected to be responsible are brought to justice in fair trials.
“They must also carry out transparent coroner inquests and autopsies on the 103 #EndSARS victims and publish their identities and the circumstances of their deaths.
“It is appalling that the Lagos state government has not even mentioned that it has held the bodies of 103 #EndSARS victims in its custody since October 2020.” Mr Sanusi said.
The organisation also demanded the immediate release of individuals jailed as a result of their involvement in the #EndSARS campaign.
It also encouraged authorities to provide victims and their families with access to justice and appropriate remedies, including adequate compensation.