Here are 5 very important information you might need to know about the world #1 trending topic in the last three days, #ENDSARS.
SARS, A unit of the Nigerian police force that has turned out to be a threat to the people it was originally meant to protect.
1. Who is SARS?
SARS is one of the 14 units in the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department which was established to detain, investigate and prosecute people involved in crimes like armed robbery, kidnapping and other forms of crimes. During its formation the Special Anti-Robbery Squad was known to operate covertly. SARS operatives were not allowed to wear police uniform, publicly carry guns or have walkie-talkies. They were given unmarked vehicles with sometimes no license plate or private plate numbers during duty.
The Special Anti-Robbery Squad was founded in 1992 by former police commissioner Simeon Danladi Midenda. The major reason SARS was formed according to whom was when Col. Rindam, a Nigerian Army Colonel was killed by police officers at a checkpoint in Lagos. When the information reached the army, soldiers were dispatched into the streets of Lagos in search of any police officer. The Nigerian police withdrew from checkpoints, security areas and other points of interest for criminals, some police officers were said to have resigned while others fled for their lives. Due to the absence of police for two weeks crime rate increased and SARS was formed with only 15 officers operating in the shadows without knowledge of the army while monitoring police radio chatters. Due to the existence of already established three anti-robbery squad which was operational at that time, Midenda needed to distinguish his squad from the already existing teams. Midenda named his team Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). After months of dialogue when the Nigerian Army and the Nigeria Police Force came to an understanding and official police duties began again in Lagos. The SARS unit was officially commissioned in Lagos following a ceasefire by the army after settlement.
2. Why The People Want #ENDSARS
According to the protesters on twitter and on the streets of some states in Nigeria, they say ’enough is enough’ of police brutality. Many have wrongly lost their lives to the happy trigger men of SARS especially young flashy and successful people in different parts of Nigeria. Now all the people want is for the government to end SARS. Some protesters placards in recent days carried messages such as; ’ it’s not a crime to own an iPhone’ ’it’s not a crime to own a laptop’ ’I’m just a creative, don’t shoot me’ ’end police brutality’ and many more.
3. The Protest So Far In Photos. (online & offline)
There has been protest both locally and internationally. Here are some photos.
4. The Government’s Stand On #ENDSARS
Just recently the Inspector General of Police, Mohamed A. Adamu ordered the immediate disbandment of SARS, although protesters are still asking for an executive order by PMB to back this up. Note that it took the Nigerian government over 48hrs to listen and act on the plea of protesting Nigerians.
5. Will This Truly Mark The End Of Police Brutality In Nigeria?
A question only time can answer.