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Coalition urges police to disband SARS, IRT, other units

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SARS. Photo/BBC

A Coalition of civil society organisations has called on the Nigeria Police Force to disband extra-legal units and allow the Force to operate in line with the rule of law.

In a statement, yesterday, the groups noted that before the specialised units came into being, there were traditional departments and units recognised under the Police Act that carried out intelligence, investigation, monitoring, training, planning, research, and statistics.

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The statement was signed by the Executive Director (ED), Partners West Africa -Nigeria, Kemi Okenyodo; ED, Spaces for Change, Victoria Ibezim-Ohaeri; ED, Confluence of Rights Nigeria, Zacchaeus Senbanjo; and ED, Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre (RULAAC), Okechukwu Nwanguma.

The statement alleged that police authorities were using the specialised units for self-serving purposes.

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The units include Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), Special Tactical Squad (STS), Intelligence Response Team (IRT), and Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Monitoring Unit.

According to the coalition, the units must remain within their legal precincts for the Force to be seen as lawfully discharging its duties under constitutional governance, thus earning the respect and admiration of Nigerians whose life and property it was created to preserve.

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