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‘I Won’t Be Part Of A Cover-Up’ – Youth Rep, Rinu Oduala Steps Down From Lagos #EndSARS Panel

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Rinu Oduala during #EndSARS protest in Lagos State.

Rinu Oduala, an #EndSARS protest frontliner, has stepped down as a youth representative member of Lagos Judicial Panel of Inquiry on police brutality in the state.

Oduala revealed this via her verified Twitter account on Friday while reacting to the recent decision of the panel to reopen Lekki Toll Plaza, where #EndSARS protesters were attacked by soldiers and some persons were shot dead.

Read Also: #EndSARS: Rinu Oduala And Majekodunmi Temitope Nominated As Youth Representatives On Lagos Judicial Panel

At its sitting last Saturday, the panel had granted approval for the return of Lekki tollgate to control of Lekki Concession Company (LCC).

However, OdualaTemitope Majekodunmi, another youth representative and two others on the panel, criticised the decision, saying their views were not reflected in the ruling.

Read Also: #EndSARS: Panel Members Divided Over Lekki Toll Gate Reopening

Reacting to this in a series of tweets on Friday, Oduala described the development as an act of injustice and announced her exit from the panel, adding that she will not be part of a cover-up.

She expressed;

My stand on the reopening on the toll gate remains clear; the state government and the private organisation which operates the toll have not been cleared of collusion with elements allegedly deployed by the federal government to target Nigerian citizens on home soil during a time of peace, without provocation.

Read Also: #OccupyLekkiTollGate: Nigerians Plan Another Protest Against Reopening Of Tollgate

The 21-year-old undergraduate added;

What I will not do is be part of a cover-up. I am proud that I took the invitation because some of the successes the panel has recorded so far have been incredibly powerful for the people.

For the first time, SARS victims have had the opportunity to be truly seen and heard by the government, by the public, and by the system that allowed them to be victims in the first place.

Oduala said although the panel achieved “partial wins”, they are not sufficient, owing to the fact that the government has not acknowledged its failings.

She further stated;

The panel allowed victims of police intimidation and brutality to have their day in the light of justice. They got to expose the violence that was meted out, to experience some catharsis from having the government acknowledge its failures and, in many cases, are going to be receiving some compensation, however inadequate for the disruption to their lives.

This is further than we have ever come as a nation, and while this same rigour was not applied to the case of the Lekki Toll shootings, we can at least celebrate the wins that our brothers and sisters can finally claim in their fight for justice, and recognise that our collective will is more powerful than any institution.

The activist stressed;

However, partial wins are not enough for me. I decided to join this fight because I wanted the government to recognise its failures and work to overhaul its security institutions. I did not expect piecemeal acknowledgements and efforts to sabotage vital proceedings.

Oduala added that she would be “stepping down from the Lagos Judicial Panel as it is now obvious that the government is only out to use us for performative actions”.

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