The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, and Speaker of House of Representatives, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila, have hailed the dissolution of Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) by the Inspector General of Police.
In a statement yesterday night in Abuja by his Special Adviser, Media, OlaAwoniyi , the President of the Senate said that it was a courageous decision to dissolve the police unit, and with this, him and his government have shown themselves as responsive to the feelings of the people.
“I am applauding the President because it is a demonstration of good leadership to yield to the demand of the populace in difficult situations like this.”
He also commended the Inspector-General of Police for the decision and challenged him to come up with measures for the transformation of the Nigeria Police into an effective law enforcement and crime fighting agency that is also a true and respected friend of the Nigerian people.
The President of the Senate said that the measures should fully address all the issues that earned the dissolved SARS the odium of the Nigerian people, and in particular of the articulate Nigerian youths.
Lawan said, “The expectation is that this situation offers us another opportunity to reform the operations of the entire Force.
“I also reiterate my call for the prosecution of all security personnel whose extra judicial killings and other acts of misconduct brought us to this sorry pass.
“I hope that the steps taken by the Inspector-General of Police will be followed with more comprehensive reform of the Police.”
Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila said action, he said, was a necessary response to outcries from multiple documented excesses of SARS operatives across the country.
The Speaker commended President Muhammadu Buhari for listening to calls by Nigerians to disband the Police special unit.
In a statement by his spokesman, Lanre Lasisi, the Speaker commended Nigerians, particularly millions of young people at home and abroad, who saw a wrong and sought to make it right.
Gbajabiamila said the dissolution of SARS and the broader, ongoing reforms of the police that will follow are a testament to the passion and resilience of a generation of Nigerians determined not to accept or tolerate injustice in whatever form.
The Speaker called on the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Abubakar Adamu to take practical steps to support and enforce this policy pronouncement.
He said: “These steps are necessary to assure the Nigerian people that the announced dissolution of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) is sincere and well-intentioned, and not merely meant to quell the ongoing protests across the country.
“The Nigeria Police Force (NPF) must also act to identify and punish those operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) involved in the most severe cases of abuse of rights, brutality and murder of Nigerian citizens.”
Gbajabiamila noted with displeasure the manhandling of some of the protesters across the nation.
“There is still a pressing need to have an independent system for monitoring police actions and holding police officers to proper account for failures to follow the law and the police code.
“The House will continue its work to legislate lasting solutions to the problems of policing in Nigeria,” he said.
He disclosed that as part of efforts at reforming the police, the House will meet with the national leadership of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), the Nigerian Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and select civil society organisations to begin joint efforts at developing a legislative proposal.
“Whatever legislation emerges from this collaboration will be presented to the House within the 30-day timeline announced by Speaker Gbajabiamila at the special session of the House of Representatives on Wednesday 7th October 2020,” he said.