IG orders reorganisation, probe of SARS nationwide
Following the outcry by Nigerians against the activities of Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) unit, the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has ordered the immediate re-organisation of the unit nationwide.
The social media and indeed traditional news platforms had been awash with calls for the dissolution of the squad at the weekend after many Nigerians accused SARS officials of inhuman treatment and brutalization of citizens across the country.
A statement signed by Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Jimoh Moshood in Abuja, yesterday said under the current arrangement, SARS would be headed by a Commissioner of Police.
Moshood, a Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) said the IGP has ordered an immediate probe into the allegations.
The statement reads: “The Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim Idris concerned with public interest and the need to reposition the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) for efficiency and effective service delivery to all Nigerians and ensure that the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) operates based on International Core Value of Policing with integrity and make sure the rule of law prevails in the operations and activities of the outfit, the IGP has directed the immediate re-organization of the Squad nationwide and instant investigation into all the allegations, complaints and infractions leveled against the personnel of the squad across the country by the IGP X-Squad of the Force.
“In the new arrangement, a Commissioner of Police is now the overall head of the Federal Anti-Robbery Squad nationwide under the Department of Operations, Force Headquarters Abuja.
“The Police Zonal Commands, State Commands and Divisions will continue to operate anti-crime units/sections, crime prevention and control squads and teams imperative to prevent and detect crimes and criminalities in their Area of Responsibilities, and other crack squads necessary to sustain law and order and protection of life and properties in their Area of Responsibilities (AOR).
“Federal Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS) will now exist and operate in the State and Zonal Commands under the Commissioner of Police (F-SARS) at the Force Headquarters.”
The Police IGP urged Nigerians to report “past or present” maltreatment to the right quarters.
He said: “However, aggrieved members of the public who have any complaint in the past or present of violation of their rights by any Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) personnel anywhere in the country are to report to the appropriate authority for further actions.
IGP X-SQUAD: 09026900729 (Calls), 09032278905 (SMS), 09035621377 (Whatsapp); Email: email@example.com
Force Public Complaint Bureau: 07056792065 Calls/SMS/whatsapp; 08088450152 Calls/SMS/whatsapp, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Get the latest news delivered straight to your inbox every day of the week. Stay informed with the Guardian’s leading coverage of Nigerian and world news, business, technology and sports.