The Nigeria Police Force’s Special Anti-Robbery Squad has come under attack again after a video surfaced online claiming that some SARS operatives allegedly shot a young man dead in front of a hotel and drove away with his car in the Ughelli area of Delta State.
Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Minister of Youths and Sport Development, Sunday Dare, Musician Banky W,and a global rights group, Amnesty international, are among prominent voices who have condemned the recurring SARS brutality.
Reacting to the the harassment of SARS, Atiku wrote;
The Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) unit of the @PoliceNG
was set up to confront violent crimes such as armed robbery, kidnapping and other related crimes. However, the unit has today morphed into an oppressor of the Nigerian masses who strive every day for a better life.
Reports of intimidation, harassment and outright extortion by officers of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) have continued unabated.
I strongly condemn their cruel actions against our people, and I urge the government to rise to the occasion and nip this monstrosity in the bud with the seriousness it deserves.
It is expedient that the activities of SARS are reviewed to ensure that the rogue elements are excised from the unit and sanity returned to its operations.
Bukola Saraki wrote:
The reports of the continued harassment, illegal arrest, detention and high handedness by rogue cells of the SARS Unit of @PoliceNG
against innocent Nigerians – most of them young people – in spite of efforts to reform the Police & raise standards of policing, are disheartening.
A situation where the officers of @PoliceNG
become a threat to the lives and property of the very citizens they swore to protect is condemnable and unacceptable.
I call on the Federal Government to immediately put a stop to these reprehensible activities and restructure the unit to better perform its lawful duties of safe guarding the lives and property of the Nigerian people
Veteran Nigerian musician Banky W also has this to say:
How many young Nigerians will have to be robbed/ kidnapped/killed by SARS before our Government takes it seriously? The “Special Anti-Robbery Squad” is doing the robbing?! Such a disgrace. What will it take for our “leaders” to do something about it? #EndSARS #EndSarsNow