By Adeoye Olanrewaju
It was a crushing blow to millions of Nigerian youths and activists campaigning for a total disbandment of the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad ( FSSR), Tuesday as the Nigeria Police Force came out with a definitive no to the request.
The Public Relations Officer of the Nigeria Police Force, DCP Frank Mba, said in a live Instagram chat with Nigerian artiste Azeez Fashola also known as Naira Marley that all the tactical squads cannot be disbanded because of the porous security situation in the country.
He said however, that efforts are ongoing to reform the activities of SARS and curb it’s excesses.
The Spokesman also encouraged young Nigerians to make a video evidence of any officer who abuse their fundamental human rights.
He said, “What we need to do is to reform SARS and make them responsive, responsible and make them work in accordance with laid
down procedures. We need them to continue to respond to violent crimes. We need them to continue to respond to armed robberies. We
need them to continue to respond to kidnappings.”
During the chat, Naira Marley emphasized the need to get SARS officers off the road. “SARS is a special arm that should only come out during robbery incidents,” Naira Marley said.
Why I cancelled planned protest
Meanwhile, the artiste has given an explanation why he cancelled his planned protest against SARS brutality scheduled for Tuesday. According to him, concerns for the safety of the protesters made him cancel the protest.
“I know my rights and yes, what really stopped me was me thinking about the safety of everybody. That was the only thing that stopped me from doing the protest. And the fact that I saw the police initial statement, that’s what made me stop the protest,” he said.
Naira Marley had earlier signified his intention to lead a protest in Lagos and other parts of the country. Minister of Youths and Sports Development, Sunday Dare however appealed to him to shelve the planned protest while the Nigeria Police also promised to appear in a live chat to discuss the concerns of youths.