Sequel to call for ban of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police by some Nigerians, Kwara State police command has said that the squad is imperative to effective policing in the country.
Lawan Ado, the state commissioner of police, who stated this while speaking at an interactive meeting with traditional/community leaders, members of trade and professional unions, tagged, ‘The eminent persons forum of the state police command’ in Ilorin, said that the police could not operate effectively without Special Anti-Robbery Squad.
The police boss, who said that the squad only needed to be reorganised as being planned by the IGP to make it more effective, added that such a squad that was battle-ready to tackle crime and insecurity in the country should be made to work in tandem with aspirations of the people.
“Recently, this issue of SARS must be disbanded has occupied public domain. But some members of the public are supporting the SARS must-stay chorus. The country cannot operate without an outfit that is combat-ready and waiting to go and fight in case of any distress call.
“That is why SARS is very good. We are all aware that the Inspector-General of Police has directed the reorganisation of that outfit. All steps will be taken to ensure that all the bad eggs there are uprooted and members of the outfit will continue to work professionally for us
to achieve our set goals,” said Ado.
He also described activities of vigilance security groups in different communities in the state as complementary, and canvassed more collaborative efforts between the police and the vigilance security groups to encourage a more robust community policing.
The police boss who stressed that the police alone could not do the work of security, however, said that the vigilance security groups had to work in synergy with the police to achieve desired goals of crime prevention and control.
“The vigilance security groups know the terrain and characters in their different communities because they are indigenes unlike the police men. And the effort had proved effective in some local government areas of the state like Isin in recent time,” he added
Also speaking, the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu Gambari, who was represented at the event by the Magaji Aare, Aremu Subair, said that SARS should be encouraged to stay to contribute more to crime prevention and control in the country.
The Emir, who advised that SARS operatives should be made to go for refresher courses and retraining to make the squad more effective, said: “I thank all the District Police officers (DPOs) that have served in Ilorin and especially, Idi-Ape, the most volatile area of Ilorin metropolis. Thank God there is peace and tranquility in Ilorin, and Kwara State as a whole.
“The trouble makers in Ilorin and especially in Idi-Ape have been caged due to the cooperation and collaboration between the police and members of the community. Many of them cannot come out even in the night, while some are still languishing in prison custody.
“I urge those community leaders present that are yet to have police-community relations to go and establish one in their area for effective policing. This will check the excesses of these bad ‘boys’ as police alone cannot do the job.”
SIKIRAT SHEHU, Ilorin