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Rivers petitions Buhari, others over alleged excesses of police squad


Nigerian Police

The Rivers government has written President Muhammadu Buhari and the international community over alleged atrocities being perpetrated in the state by the Federal Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS).

It claimed the state was under siege and the police team was perpetrating the acts deliberately to scare away prospective investors.

The Commissioner for Information and Communications, Emma Okah, said the option was taken after five letters to the Inspector General of Police and the Police Service Commission to rein in the Akin Fakorede-led team failed to elicit desired responses.


He clarified that the government was not after the person of Fakorede but the “odious methods he employs in doing his job and the consequences.”

Okah said: “It is on record that since 2015, the Rivers State government has been making calls for the investigation of the activities of SARS and the sanctioning of its commander, but all that fell on deaf ears.

“The Rivers State government had accused him and his men of organised electoral rigging, extra judicial killings, armed robbery, kidnapping, extortion, planting of incrimination evidence on innocent people or their property, illegal arrest and detention, inhuman and degrading treatment of innocent people and rape. We still stand on these allegations and with all sense of responsibility. Many of them have increased in intensity.”

The commissioner said the state was afraid that that the special police team might be running a hidden objective prior to the 2019 general elections.

He claimed that the outfit had been programmed to disorganise the security architecture of the state and foist an atmosphere of insecurity.

The government listed a number of nefarious activities against the team from December 12, 2016 to September 11, 2017. The allegations ranged from election disruption to active involvement in kidnap activities.

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