Nigerian judges condemn gun violence killing 16 people in toll booths

Lawyers who sit on Nigeria’s National Judicial Council condemned on Monday a shooting last month that killed 16 people and injured 18 at a road toll booth along a highway linking Lagos to neighbouring Ogun state.

The council’s panel was set up after a post-mortems report revealed 11 of the victims were shot from a long distance at close range and five at a distance of three metres or less.

Justice Ayotunde Phillips, one of the five judges on the panel, declared: “The incident is an animal slaughter; it was also a massacre, we see it as an act of terror.”

The November 17 shooting in Lekki along the Murtala Muhammed Expressway was captured on security cameras.

In his comment, Phillips, who chairs the panel, urged Nigerians to go slow when going through toll gates for fear of being victims.

“It is not only a matter of going slow but also waiting. You don’t fear for your lives. It is a wonderful invention, speed kills.

“If not speed, these shootings and events, and probably the ones we will not have in our minds, will be a thing of the past,” he said.

The State Security Service has launched a manhunt for three gunmen who shot at the toll gate.

The suspects could be local police officers, soldiers or hired killers, the agency has said.

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