Following nationwide protests against the brutality and extra-judicial killings by operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, (SARS), the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu on Sunday dissolved the special unit.
He said the operatives will be redeployed to other police formations and commands.
Adamu announced this in a live broadcast.
At the briefing, the IGP said, “The Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Nigeria Police Force otherwise known as SARS is hereby dissolved in all the 36 states police command and the Federal Capital Territory.”
The unit which has been at the centre of the storm, was founded in 1992 to combat cases of armed robbery, kidnapping, and other violent crimes.
In a release issued by the Force Public Relations Officer, DCP Frank Mbah tagged “IGP DISSOLVES THE SPECIAL ANTI-ROBBERY SQUAD (SARS)· Emplaces other measures to protect the citizens”, the IGP explained that other measures that will help in protecting the citizens will soon be announced.
“In the finest spirit of democratic, citizen-centred and community policing, the Inspector-General of Police, IGP M.A Adamu, NPM, mni has today, 11th October, 2020, dissolved the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) across the 36 State Police Commands and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) where they hitherto existed.
“The IGP, while noting that the dissolution of SARS is in response to the yearnings of the Nigerian people, observes that by this dissolution, all officers and men of the now defunct Special Anti-robbery Squad are being redeployed with immediate effect.
“The IGP notes that the Force is not oblivious of the ever present need to combat armed robbery, kidnapping and other violent crimes in the country which was before now the core mandate of the erstwhile Squad. He assures that a new policing arrangement to address anticipated policing gaps the dissolution of SARS would cause has been evolved and shall be announced in due course.
“Meanwhile, as part of measures to prevent a re-occurrence of events that gave rise to the dissolution of SARS, a Citizens’ and Strategic Stakeholders’ Forum is being formed to regularly interface with Police leadership at all levels and advise on police activities as they affect the general public.
“In addition, the Force is constituting an Investigation Team which shall include Civil Society Organizations and Human Rights Bodies to work with the Police in investigating alleged cases of human rights violations. The measure, the IGP believes, will enhance transparency and accountability in police services as well as providing a system of deterrence for erring police officers whose action clearly violates the rights of the citizenry.
“The IGP appreciates and commends all citizens particularly those who genuinely express their concerns for a better policing orientation in an organized, patriotic and civil manner. He reaffirms the determination of the Force to bequeath to the country a Police Force and System that is professional in service delivery and most importantly, accountable to the people,” he noted.