As Human Rights Commission sets up an investigation panel.
The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has set up the Special Weapons and Tactics Team that will replace the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad.
The prospective members of the new team, who would undergo tactical training next week, will undergo a psychological and medical examination to ascertain their fitness and eligibility for the new assignment.
A statement by the Force spokesman, DCP Frank Mba, in Abuja on Tuesday, disclosed that the personnel from police commands in the South-East and the South-South will be trained at the Counter-Terrorism College, Nonwa-Tai, Rivers State.
Those from the police commands in the North and the South-West will be trained at the Police Mobile Force Training College, Ende, Nasarawa State, and the Police Mobile Force Training College, Ila-Orangun, Osun State, respectively.
The statement was entitled, ‘IGP orders all defunct SARS personnel to report at the force headquarters for psychological and medical examination’.
It also disclosed that the IGP had ordered all personnel of the defunct SARS to report at the Force Headquarters, Abuja, for debriefing, psychological and medical examination.
The officers are expected to undergo the process as a prelude to further training and reorientation before being redeployed into mainstream policing duties.
The statement read, “The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, today, 13th October 2020, in accordance with section 18 (10) of the Police Act 2020, ordered all personnel of the defunct SARS to report at the Force Headquarters, Abuja for debriefing, psychological and medical examination.
“The officers are expected to undergo this process as a prelude to further training and reorientation before being redeployed into mainstream policing duties.
“The medical examination will be carried out by the newly set-up Police Counselling and Support Unit, a unit, which henceforth, shall engage in psychological management, re-orientation and training of officers of the Force deployed for tactical operations and other duties. “
The unit, which is domiciled with the Force Medical Department and coordinated by the Force Medical Officer, has its membership drawn from psychiatrists, psychologists, medics, pastors and imams, public relations practitioners, civil society, and other human rights groups with relevant qualifications and expertise.
While reaffirming his commitment towards the successful and holistic implementation of the police reforms, the IG enjoined members of the public, particularly protesting citizens to “exercise restraint and allow measures being put in place to come to fruition and engender a police force that would meet the yearnings and aspirations of the citizenry.”
Human Rights Commission to set up an investigation panel
The National Human Rights Commission said on Tuesday that it was about to set up an Independent Investigation Panel to look into human rights violations by the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad and other segments of the Nigeria Police Force.
A statement by the commission’s Assistant Director Public Affairs, Fatimah Mohammed, said the proposed IIP would be set up “within the next one week”.
The NHRC’s plan to set up the fresh panel came about 16 months after a presidential panel headed by the Executive Secretary of the commission, Mr Tony Ojukwu, submitted its report recommending among others, the proscription of SARS to the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd) in March last year.
No move was made to implement the report of the panel until protests broke out in different parts of the country, demanding the disbandment of SARS and an end to police brutality in the country.
The NHRC’s plan to set up a fresh Independent panel came as the anti-SARS protests gained momentum and spread to other parts of the country despite the announcement of disbandment of the police unit by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu.
The commission said on Tuesday that the decision to set up the IIP was taken on October 12, 2020 at a Multi-Stakeholders’ Forum in Abuja organised by the Executive Secretary of the NHRC, Tony Ojukwu, and the Inspector General of Police as a follow-up to the recent SARS disbandment.
The statement added, that the Executive Secretary of the commission would make “an open call for memoranda from members of the public whose rights have been violated by the defunct SARS and other segments of the police” within a week.