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Lagos Govt Reportedly Rejects FOI Request For CCTV Footage Of Lekki Tollgate Shooting

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Lagos State Government has rejected a Freedom of Information request for the CCTV footage of the fatal shooting of unarmed #EndSARS protesters at the Lekki toll plaza on October 20, 2020.

This is contained in a letter written by Deyemi Bamgbose on behalf of the Attorney-General of Lagos State, ThePunch reports.

A human rights lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, last week wrote a letter to the state government invoking the Freedom of Information Act 2011.

Effiong in the letter addressed to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, requested for the CCTV footage in the interest of the public.

However, in a response dated November 3, 2020 titled, ‘Re: Urgent Request Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act 2011’, the state government said it could not make the CCTV footage available because the FoI Act is a federal law and it doesn’t apply to states.

The government also cited a 2018 Court of Appeal judgement to back its claim.

The letter reads in part;

I am further directed to inform you that the laws of Lagos State do not include the Freedom of Information Act which is a federal law that is not applicable to the state. As such, your request cannot be granted.

The state government said in the case of EDOSACA vs Osakue and others in 2018, the Court of Appeal ruled that, “My strong view on it is that given the provisions of the said Act as presently enacted vis a vis Section 4 of the 1999 Constitution and Items 4 and 5 of Part 2, 2nd schedule thereof, the applicant is not bound to comply with the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2011.

However, according to ThePunch, another Court of Appeal in Akure in April 2018 ruled that the FoI Act was applicable to all states of the federation.

The FoI Act, which was signed into law by former President Goodluck Jonathan in 2011, makes it mandatory for public records to be made available to those who request for it.

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