Protesters who are demanding the disbandment of the special
anti-robbery squad (SARS) are currently at the police headquarters in Abuja, demanding to meet Mohammed Adamu, inspector general of police (IGP).
Chanting “End SARS Now, End SARS Now”, the protesters vowed not to
leave the place until they meet with the IGP.
A senior police officer, who came out of the building to address the crowd, was interrupted as shouts of “We want to see the IG” rented the air.
Abdul Mahmud, a human rights lawyer who led the protesters to the police headquarters, failed in his bid to pacify the protesters.
Gun-wielding policemen were on standby as the protesters blocked the road in front of the force headquarters.
There have been a nationwide outrage over what many, especially young
persons, describe as the excesses of SARS, a unit of the police.
Aggrieved youth spent the night in front of the Lagos house of assembly on Thursday, prompting Mudashiru Obasa, the speaker, to summon an emergency meeting.
Obafemi Hamzat, deputy governor of the state, also sued for calm but the aggrieved persons vowed to remain on the streets until the federal
government disbands SARS.
On Friday, President Muhammadu Buhari summoned the IGP to the presidential villa over the nationwide unrest.
The president later issued a statement where he said he had instructed
Adamu to bring erring police officers to book.
“I met again with the Inspector General of Police tonight. Our determination to reform the police should never be in doubt. I am being briefed regularly on the reform efforts ongoing to end police brutality and unethical conduct, and ensure that the Police are fully accountable to the people,” he had said.
“The IG already has my firm instructions to conclusively address the
concerns of Nigerians regarding these excesses, and ensure erring
personnel are brought to justice. I appeal for patience and calm, even as Nigerians freely exercise their right to peacefully make their views known.
“The vast majority of men and women of the Nigeria Police Force are patriotic and committed to protecting the lives and livelihoods of, Nigerians and we will continue to support them to do their job.”
A footage showing SARS officers dragging two men from a hotel in
Lagos, shooting one of them triggered the latest unrest.