Extra-judicial killings: Implement SARS reforms – Group tells IGP


The I]inspector general of Police, Muhammed Adamu, has been urged to implement the recommendations of the presidential panel on the reorganization of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) team of the Nigeria Police.


The call made by the Human Rights Society for All, a civil society organsiation, followed reports of alleged extra-judicial killings of innocent Nigerians by men of the Nigeria Police in various states across the country.


The president of the organisation, Moses Adamu, President, in a statement issued on Wednesday, August 13, said the HRSA is appalled with the brazen disregard for the rights of innocent Nigerians who go about their normal businesses by policemen who continually harass them through acts of extortion and intimidation.


Moses said SARS has earned a notorious reputation of a brutal agency following cases of extrajudicial killings, torture, abuse of detainees, and extortion of suspects. He said the activities of the Nigeria Police have also raised a huge question mark in the country in recent times.

Alleging that victims of crime are now obliged to pay the police from the moment they enter a police station to file a complaint until the day their case is brought before a court, Moses said senior police officers also enforce a perverse system of “returns” in which rank-and-file officers are compelled to pay up the chain of command a share of the money they extort from the public.


Moses said: “The Human Rights Society for All believes that if urgent steps are not taken to curtail the nefarious activities of the Nigerian Police the country might wake up one morning and see police officers aiding and abetting criminal gangs at the detriment of national interest.”


“The Human Rights Society for All wishes to state in unequivocal terms that the atrocities committed by police officers across the country are inimical to the growth and development of Nigeria, and as such it must be curtailed by the relevant stakeholders,” Moses said.

The organisation said the IGP should as a matter of urgency see to the full implementation of the presidential panel on the reformation of SARS in a bid to see to the sustenance of peace and tranquility in the country.


It also called on the IGP to begin the process of reorientation of officers and men of the Nigerian Police Force if it is desirous of making a mark in his tenure and also end police extortion and brutality to protect the rights and privileges of innocent Nigerians from falling victims to police highhandedness and insensitivity.


“The Inspector-General of Police must ensure those police officers found wanting in the discharge of their duties are punished according to the stipulations of the law.”


“The Human Rights Society for All concludes that the activities of officers and men of the Nigerian Police Force have not reflected any positive contribution to the security of lives and properties in the country, but instead, it has brought tears, sorrows, and blood.”

“This act of police brutality must stop in the overall interest of the country. Nigerian taxpayers do not pay for them to be molested, harassed, and subjected to all forms of ill-treatment. However, instead, they pay to be protected by the Nigerian Police Force, and so shall it be,” Moses concluded.


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