LAGOS STATE government has distanced itself from the cancellation of #EndSARS ‘Soro Soke’ summit by the management of Landmark Event Centre on Thursday.
Lagos State Commissioner for Information Gbenga Omotosho said Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu or the state government had nothing to do with the cancellation.
“Some people came to the governor complaining that the state government had influenced Landmark Event Centre to cancel the #EndSARS Memorial. The governor called the manager and asked him when last he spoke with them and the man said ‘maybe six months ago.’
“The phone was on a speak-out and everyone of them heard the coversation. The man did not even know that it was on a speak-out,” Omotosho said on Arise TV on Wednesday.
The event centre had cancelled the #EndSARS ‘Soro Soke’ event to commemorate one year anniversary of #EndSARS, which was held to protest against police brutality and recklessness of the now disbanded State Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in October 2020.
The climax of the protest was reached on October 20, 2020 when soldiers shot and killed protesters at Lekki Toll Gate.
The Landmark Event Centre refunded the money paid by organisers of the ‘Soro Soke’ summit, sparking fears that it was influenced by the government.
According to one of the organisers, Folarin Falana (Falz), the event was expected to hold at the venue on October 20, 2021, to commemorate the first anniversary of last year’s #EndSARS protest and honour the lives of protesters who were killed or injured during the demonstration, especially at the Lekki Toll Gate in Lagos.
The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II, was supposed to be the special guest of honour at the event.
A member of the organising team Banks Omisore had tweeted earlier, “We need to have honest conversations of the event surrounding 10/20/21. @OoniAdimulaIfe will be the keynote speaker.”
Despite the cancellation, the organisers went ahead to protest at Lekki Toll Gate on October 20.