The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has backed the decision by the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, to ban with immediate effect the operations of the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS) and a range of other Tactical Squads of the Force.
The NGF Chairman and Governor of Ekiti State, Dr Kayode Fayemi, in his reaction on Monday, lauded the IGP, saying the decision was received with “great relief and satisfaction”.
Fayemi, however, expressed hope that the announcement this time would promptly be followed by action and that there would be no reversal to the “unorthodox enforcement practices being complained against.”
He called for appropriate sanctions against law enforcement officers that had been “lawless and irresponsible” in the exercise of their duties against ordinary Nigerians.
He said: “We also completely agree with the directive of the IGP that ‘no personnel of the Force is authorized to embark on patrols or tactical assignments in mufti’ forthwith.
“This, in our view, will significantly reduce the various infractions of the Force that the ordinary Nigerian people have been complaining about and bring an end to the menace of SARS brutality on the people they are meant to protect.
“The IGP’s instructions could not have come at a better time when majority of Nigerians are unhappy with this cohort of police officers who have routinely engaged in unlawful killings and torture, thereby giving the Force a bad name.
“It is helpful to recall that SARS has been cautioned in the same manner before only for it to go back to its old ways.
“Our young people should not be criminalized simply on account of how they look or their mode of dressing or the cars they drive, the type of phone they carry, etc. This is an assault on their fundamental human rights.
“We think this is a timely clinical response by the leadership of the Nigerian Police Force and must specially commend IGP Adamu for his promptness and boldness.”