The Deputy Director, Public Relations, Department of State Service, Marilyn Ogar, confirmed the number of casualties in a press statement.
The statement said “following our earlier releases, it has been established that 18 casualties were recorded while two service personnel sustained serious injuries.
“Three other detainees, who sustained gunshot injuries during the incident, have also died”, adding that “investigations are still on going to ascertain the immediate and remote causes of the incident”
An earlier press statement by Miss Ogar had confirmed that the Service Suspect Handler, who went to the detention facility within the Headquarters to feed the suspects, was disarmed and attacked by a suspect at 07:15 hours on Sunday.
“One of the suspects attempted to disarm him by hitting him at the back of his head with his handcuff. His attempt to escape drew the attention of other guards at the facility who fired some shots to warn and deter others.
“The gunshots attracted the attention of the military with whom we have an understanding of mutual assistance in the event of any threat. The Army immediately deployed a team to reinforce our perimeter guards to forestall any external collaborators. The situation has since been brought under control”.
Following the shooting, there has been heavy presence of soldiers on the road leading to Aso Drive, while security operatives search vehicles passing through the road.
Spokesman for the President, Dr Reuben Abati, told Channels Television in a telephone interview that the incident happened within the premises of the SSS headquarters and was quickly contained.
“It is true that this morning there was an incident at the SSS headquarters, known as ‘Yellow House’, but the incident has absolutely nothing to do with the Presidential Villa. But some mischievous persons have gone online to say, claim and promote the lie that President Jonathan is under threat and that the incident had something to do with the Villa but this is absolutely not true.
“I can tell you categorically and to all Nigerians that President Goodluck Jonathan is safe and well. What happened at the SSS headquarters has nothing to do with the President. There was absolutely no threat to the Presidency because whatever happened was contained within the premises of the SSS headquarters,” Dr Abati stressed.