The Nigeria Police Force has backed its Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, against the repetitive complaints it receives from the public, with the claims that most of the complaints posted on social media are false.
While speaking during an interview on Channels Television on Monday, July 9, 2018, Force Public Relations Officer, DCP Jimoh Moshood, said the force has put appropriate measures in place to deal with erring officers who have been found guilty of misconduct.
According to Moshood, the measures put in place include the phasing out of incompetent officers who have been replaced by new people.
He noted that human rights desk offices have also been created without being under the influence of SARS commanders.
He also disclosed that several non-governmental organisations and civil society organisations have been involved by the force to take charge of complaints against officers to promote accountability.
“The IGP has taken the bull by the horns. When he came on board, the first thing he did was to organise a training which involved the national Human Rights Commission, the ICRC, and other NGO’s on human rights training for SARS.
“Equally, when the outcry was coming up, the same kind of training was repeated and he broadened it to ensure that the reorganisation of SARS commenced immediately. He appointed a commissioner of police to be in charge of SARS. SARS are now under the control of the commissioner of police at the force headquarter. They were taken out of the command but they are still under the supervision of the commissioners of police in the state because the constitution is very clear that the commissioner of police in every state is in charge of all the police deployment/operatives in such a state.
“Now, human rights desk office have been opened in the command who are not under the control of the commander SARS of every state.
“As we speak, the commander SARS have been rotated. Some of them that are found not being fit, maybe because of age or some antecedent, have been taken off and new people have replaced them.
“Of recent, the Nigerian Policing Project has herded a team of police officers and equally NGOs and CSOs to take complaints from the public to ensure that anything that has to do with complaint from SARS are addressed.
“But largely, most of the complaints that people painted on Facebook or other social media are not correct. Those that have been correct have been investigated. Some people have been found culpable and they have been tried and dismissed.”