Lagos killing: CCTV footage points to police officer’s innocence

Lekki Gateway Toll gate where a policeman shot dead Olawale Kazeem

There are fresh questions over the shooting of a man by police in Lekki, Lagos.

An officer opened fire on Olawale Kazeem after he placed a sign asking the guard to turn off the CCTV cameras at the toll gate.

The police officer, who had asked Mr Kazeem to part with his money, has been suspended over the shooting.

We have examined the CCTV footage and it tells a very different story.

Video footage filmed and posted online by a local resident show Mr Kazeem, a driver, arguing with a driver and refusing to pay.

When the police officer, who apparently had told Mr Kazeem he was a serving police officer, approached Mr Kazeem to try to settle the matter, the 39-year-old reportedly pulled out a sign warning the traffic-control official about the camera.

In the clip, Mr Kazeem then can be seen taunting the officer before pulling out a knife.

At this point, he is seen trying to stab the traffic officer with the knife, before he is shot.

Although it seems Mr Kazeem may have been an accomplice of the traffic officer, the video does not show a knife being pulled out.

The traffic officer was reportedly injured in the attack.

A spokesman for the Lagos State Police Command, Chike Oti, said officers had taken over the scene, and that investigators were currently examining CCTV footage.

“The officers took over immediately as soon as they received the report and were able to see how he was shot and the position where he fell,” Mr Oti said.

“They have gone to the hospital to identify him and are working on the findings of the autopsy report to ascertain the truth.”

But the second video from witnesses at the scene shows a different story.

In that footage, Mr Kazeem is seen being held down by the traffic officer and wrestling with him as he continually asks him for his money.

As the policeman lies down on the ground, Mr Kazeem, who continues to wrestle with him, tries to pull out a knife.

It seems the two struggle until the traffic officer pushes him away from the camera, and as he falls to the ground, the officer is then seen grabbing the camera before firing at Mr Kazeem’s head.


Chief Inspector Michael Okonkwo, chairman of the Nigeria Police Association in Nigeria, told the BBC that Mr Kazeem’s claim he was trying to stab the traffic officer was “just a fabricated story”.

“No single policeman ever tames and lives with any life weapon,” Mr Okonkwo said.

“To see him screaming profanities and reaching for a knife from behind the table, it shows clearly that the policeman shot at him from nowhere.”

Since the incident, hundreds of people have gathered outside the toll gate to protest.

At one point, there was an attempt to form a human chain around the area to block any officers who arrived from entering.

However, that was unsuccessful, and within the next few hours, the protesters were forcibly removed from the toll gate site.

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