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How FG, States, are meeting demands of EndSARS protesters

A candlelight vigil for victims of police brutality in Lagos. Photo: Twitter

No fewer than 37 members of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad are to be dismissed from service. 24 other operatives are expected to be prosecuted for various acts of professional misconduct.

These are parts of a report of the Presidential Panel on Reform of the SARS set up by the Federal Government in 2018.

Presenting the report to the PSC Chairman, Musiliu Smith, in Abuja on Friday, the Executive Secretary of the National Human Rights Commission, Tony Ojukwu, called for a speedy implementation.

Meeting the demands

EndSARS protests have entered the 8th day and is becoming larger with new demands as the Federal Government is working assiduously to meet the demands.

Although the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, scrapped the police unit last Sunday and announced a replacement, the protesters want the police authorities to carry out psychological evaluation and re-training of all disbanded SARS officers before they are redeployed.

They demand the release of all arrested protesters, justice for all deceased victims of police brutality and appropriate compensation for their families. They also want increased salaries for police officers as well as the establishment of an independent body to oversee the investigation and prosecution of all reports of police misconduct.

The new demands include reforms Federal Government organisations, education reforms, youth development reforms and constitutional reforms.Others are public office reforms, health reforms, as well as, reduction in the cost of governance.

The National Economic Council on Oct. 15, directed the immediate establishment of state-based Judicial Panels of Inquiry to nvestigate complaints of police brutality, which VP Osinbajo said can only be done by stars according to law.

The governors are also to immediately establish a Victim’s Fund to facilitate the payment of monetary compensation.

President Buhari, while addressing the nation on Oct. 12, said the dissolution of SARS was the first step in extensive reforms of the police.

Very sober reflection

Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said he has seen powerful images and videos of the #CandleForSARSVictims vigils held across the country and it calls for “very” sober reflections.

He wrote on twitter that an orderly room trial of police officers involved in the surulere incident has began. “

Some of the victims attended and will testify before the panel next week. Justice will be served. Thank you to the team actively following up and helping victims.”

There is so much more to be done and I will keep sharing the actions we are taking in line with my announcements, he added.

Kaduna state has also set up a judicial commission of enquiry to look into police brutality.

We are sorry

Vice president Yemi Osinbajo had apologised over government’s slow response to the EndSARS protests.

He wrote in a series of tweets that the anger was justified and that actions are in full gear to ensure justice was served over police brutality.

Saadatu Albashir

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