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October 22, 2020

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Presidential panel recommends 37 officers for dismissal, 24 for prosecution

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The Presidential Panel on Reform of SARS has recommended 37 police officers for dismissal and 24 for prosecution following 113 complaints on alleged human rights violations from across the country received by the panel.

This is contained in a statement signed by the Police Service Commission’s (PSC) head, press and public relations, Ikechukwu Ani, and made available to journalists on Friday in Lagos.

The statement said that the executive secretary, National Human Rights Commission, Tony Ojukwu, solicited the support of the PSC in the implementation of the aspects of the report covered by PSC constitutional mandate.

According to the statement, Mr Ojukwu made the solicitation while formally presenting the 2018 Report of the Presidential Panel to the PSC.

“The presidential panel had among other things investigated allegations of human rights violations and abuse of office against SARS and recommended reform or restructuring of the outfit,” the statement quoted Ojukwu as saying.

In the statement, Ojukwu said that PSC had all it takes to deal appropriately with the Report of the Presidential Panel on Reform of Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS).

“We have come to see a PSC determined to play a leading role in the reform of the Nigeria Police Force,” Mr Ojukwu said.

He said that the panel also directed the Inspector General of Police, Muhammed Adamu, to unravel the identity of 22 officers involved in the violation of the human rights of innocent citizens.

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The statement also quoted PSC Chairman, retired Inspector General of Police, Musiliu Smith, as saying that the PSC will collaborate and support the Human Rights Commission in the promotion of good governance.

He, however, said that for an effective reform of SARS, there must be a deliberate effort to select capable, professional and credible people to replace the disbanded outfit.

“There must also be training and close supervision of the newly-selected officers so that the nation will not experience the rot that became the fate of the disbanded unit. Any misconduct, he noted, should be severely and promptly handled,” Smith said.

The former police boss said that the government should show more concern to the funding of its vital agencies as these agencies need funds to do their job.

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The statement said Smith has urged the government to provide a standard and proper living accommodation for the officers of the Nigeria Police Force for the officers to put in their best.



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