Sir: There has been a nationwide campaign especially on social media for the proscription of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) because of their excesses as a result of which many innocent Nigerians have been killed.
Their most recent victim is the late Kazeem Tiamiyu, a footballer with a club in Sagamu known as Remo Stars. According to his friend who was himself nearly murdered – the footballer had parked his car and left him there to get something from across the road when SARS officials accosted him and later bundled his into their waiting van after he was thoroughly searched ostensibly on suspicion of being a cyber-criminal.
The friend said the late footballer was pushed out of the van and then got crushed to death by an incoming vehicle. The account given by SARS was that he tried to escape and jumped out of the van and met his death when an incoming car ran over him.
Bill Gates, it was, who was said to have said that Nigeria is one of the most dangerous places to give birth to a child. How true; if diseases don’t kill you, a trigger happy SARS official may most probably finish you before your time.
To cap it all, the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Peter Ogunyanwo who represented the IG at the condolence visit to the family of the slain young man would later confess that the SARS officials were on illegal duty and didn’t obtain the clearance to operate on that fateful day.
Tiamiyu could well have been another Jay Jay Okocha, Nwankwo Kanu or even Odion Ighalo. Now, his dreams have perished before his very eye as he died in the most gruesome of ways.
It is high time the federal government hearkened to the voice of Nigerians by disbanding this group before more needless killings occur.
The government must put a soothing balm on the faces of the parents of Tiamiyu by bringing those behind the killing to swift justice.
How many robbery cases has SARS successfully tackled? How many robbers have been sent to gaol through the intervention of SARS? How many armed robbers have met their waterloo through the crack efficiency of the outfit?
The body has long outlived its usefulness as they have reduced themselves to extortionists of suspected cyber criminals which is a negation of the raison d’etre for setting them up in the first place.
The generality of Nigerians can no longer stomach their outlawry. Enough is enough!
- Tony Ademiluyi, Lagos.