Lately the word ‘SARS’ an acronym for the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, have been a trending talk in the Nation. The Special Anti-Robbery Squad commonly known as SARS, a unit of the Nigeria Police Force under the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, which was founded in 1992 by a retired Commissioner of Police, Simeon Danladi and who was also the Nigerian Contingent Commander to United Nations Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1998. The retired Police Commissioner then added the word “Special’’ to the already existing Anti-Robbery Squad operation then, which in turn, is presently known as SARS.
No doubt! Recently there have been several accusations and allegations by the citizens of the country, allegations strong enough to scrap the SARS unit from the Nigeria Police Force. Allegations such as kidnapping, rape, stealing, inhumane torture, killings etc and lot of negative vices inclined to SARS have been so alarming. Testimonies pouring out from individuals and masses of this beloved country of ours, backed up with physical evidence is of no doubt nothing but the truth of these allegations.
Several proposals have been forwarded to the Federal Government to end the dreadful behaviour of SARS against the citizens it is meant to protect, seems as though the effort channelled by the citizens to bring the SARS to justice have simultaneously been ignored. Thus making the citizens of the country to take matters into their hands, leading to vigorous protest been raised on the street and various social media handlings tagged as “#End SARS”. The recent resolution by the citizens which led to this crucial action defines the unbearable state of the people towards SARS; therefore the need by the Federal Government to look into this matter with immediate effect cannot be neglected and overemphasized on. The allegations against the Nigeria Police Force Unit, which has been proving beyond doubt as fact and truth is more than enough evidence to bring SARS to justice, as long as the law exist no one is free from impunity. The creation of the Unit is aimed at fighting vices and negative activities in the country. However with these allegations which goes against the rules and regulation aimed at what they were meant to do, that is ‘To protect the citizens of the country’. It’s now mandatory indeed to bring the SARS unit back on track to make them realize the full definition and objectives of their offices.
I, standing against the abolishment of the SARS unit does not mean that am going against the masses request. Before taking matters into our hands, we need to weigh the consequences of our decision. Have met people in one way or the other giving testimonies on how SARS saved their communities from rogues, roadside criminals, cultist, helped them to recover stolen gadget and finance restoration from scammers etc. No doubt to some extent SARS have been of help to the community and nation at large. SARS in some part of the country are doing an appreciative job worth of thanks and gratitude’s by the people. We can’t use the sins and crimes of others to paint an entire organisation ‘black’. The question we need to ask ourselves as human is, what could be the reason behind such behaviour by this personnel? I believe in the process of reforming this organisation, we will find the answers we seek for.
Just in, Lagos state house of assembly asks the Federal Government to scrap SARS. Fact is; if such request is finally granted, who will secure our roads and communities? When you scrap them from the system then what happens to their internally developed attitude? In my opinion they need re-orientation and proper education on what duties and services demands in the society. I go with ‘Reform’ and not scrapping off, they can’t be totally bad. We need them now more than ever. With the rate of increase number of; fraudster, criminals, youth becoming terror to the society and community at large, all these vices needs to be put in checked. So far so good, SARS have been doing well in tackling these issues. Scrapping SARS is not the problem but I hope the level of fraudulent activities will not increase more in Nigeria; we also need to think about these things. Instead of ending SARS, it should be “Reformed”. It’s an anti-robbery squad and the present Nigeria needs a reformed SARS more than ever.
In conclusion, the Federal Government should call SARS to order, scrutinize them by giving them all necessary trainings to build up their mental capacity which will enable them understand vividly the aims and objectives of their job. The SARS most take the cognizance of the fact that the survival fate of the people rest in their hands.
Olomu Oladipupo Micheal, a Chemical engineering graduate of the Federal University of Technology, Minna, Niger state, wrote in via email@example.com