President Muhammadu Buhari, on Monday approved the dismissal of 37 police officers as recommended by the National Human Rights Commission(NHRC) Presidential Special Panel on Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) reform.
Anthony Ojukwu, the Executive Secretary, NHRC and Chairman Presidential Panel on SARS Reform, disclosed this during the submission of the panel’s report at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The NHRC boss stated that the panel received 113 complaints on alleged human rights violations from across the country and 22 memoranda on suggestions on how to reform and restructure SARS and the Nigeria Police in general.
He said: “At the end of its public hearing and having listened to complaints as well as defendants and their counsel, the Panel recommended 37 police ofﬁcers for dismissal from the force. Twenty four were recommended for prosecution.
“The panel also directed the Inspector General of Police to unravel the identity of twenty two (22) ofﬁcers involved in the violation of the human rights of innocent citizens.
“The police was directed to pay compensation of various sums in 45 complaints and tender public apologies in ﬁve complaints and directed to obey court orders in ﬁve matters.
“The Police was directed to immediately arrest and prosecute two retired senior police ofﬁcers found to have violated the rights of citizens (one for extra-judicial killing and the other for illegal takeover of Property of a suspect). The Panel also recovered two vehicles illegally auctioned by SARS ofﬁcers and returned them to their owners.”
Some other key recommendations of the panel include,” Signiﬁcant improvement in the funding, kitting and facilities of the Nigeria Police Force; Strengthening Information and Communication Technology of the Force; Establishment of State and Local Government Police.”