The Commissioner of Police of Lagos State, Hakeem Odumosu, on Wednesday ordered that all operations of the disbanded Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) be handed over to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID).
The order is contained in a statement signed by the Command’s Public Relations Officer, SP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, and made available to newsmen in Lagos on Wednesday.
Adejobi said that the police commissioner gave the order while debriefing operatives of the disbanded SARS, Anti-Kidnapping Squad, Anti-Cultism Squad and Raider in Lagos State at the Command Headquarters, Ikeja.
“The debriefing was in compliance with the directives of the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, to disband and ground the activities of the teams in the 36 states of the federation and the FCT.
“Their operations, investigations and pending cases will be handed over to the SCID Department, Panti, Yaba, with immediate effect,” he quoted Odumosu as saying.
Adejobi said that Odumosu officially informed the operatives of the formation of the new Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT) to tackle armed robbery, kidnapping, violent and other weapon-related crimes in the country.
“Odumosu warned the disbanded teams to desist from parading themselves as SARS operatives or any operatives under whatever nonenclature in the state.
“All their cases and operational uniforms should be handed over to State CID, Panti, while their satellite offices across the state be taken over and be occupied by the nearest Divisional Police Headquarters in the areas respectively,” Odumosu was also quoted as saying.
The police spokesman said that Odumosu urged the general public to inform and report to the command any activities or misconduct of any police personnel claiming to be SARS operative in the state.
“Any officer venturing into investigative cases under the SARS or any of the disbanded tactical teams in Lagos State should be reported immediately to the police command in the state.
“Odumosu also appealed to protesters to be law-abiding, maintain peace and respect the rights and opinions of others in the state, while emphasising that their blockage of access roads was unnecessary,” Adejobi said in the statement.