The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu has set up a new unit known as Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT), to replace the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigerian Police Force.
The new police unit (SWAT) was announced barely 48 hours after IGP Adamu dissolved SARS following nationwide protests over its brutality, illegal arrest, extortion, extra-judicial killings, among others.
In a statement on Tuesday, October 13, 2020, the force spokesman, Frank Mba said the IGP had ordered all personnel of the disbanded SARS to report at force headquarters in Abuja for debriefing.
Frank Mba said prospective members of the new SWAT team will undergo a psychological and medical examination to ascertain their fitness and eligibility for the new assignment.
“The Inspector General of Police, IGP M.A. Adamu, NPM, mni has, today, 13th October, 2020, in accordance with Section 18 (10) of the Police Act 2020, ordered all personnel of the defunct SARS to report at the Force Headquarters, Abuja for debriefing, psychological and medical examination.
“The officers are expected to undergo this process as a prelude to further training and reorientation before being redeployed into mainstream policing duties.
“The medical examination will be carried out by the newly set-up Police Counselling and Support Unit (PCSU), a Unit, which henceforth shall engage in psychological management, re-orientation and training of officers of the Force deployed for tactical operations and other duties.
“The Unit, which is domiciled with the Force Medical Department and coordinated by the Force Medical Officer, has its membership drawn from amongst psychiatrists, psychologists, medics, pastors and imams, Public Relations practitioners, Civil Society and other Human Rights groups with relevant qualifications and expertise.
“Meanwhile, the IGP has set up a new Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team that will fill the gaps arising from the dissolution of the defunct SARS. Prospective members of this new team will also undergo psychological and medical examination to ascertain their fitness and eligibility for the new assignment.
“They are to commence training at the different Police tactical training institutions nationwide, next week. While personnel from the Police Commands in the South-East and the South-South will be trained at the Counter-Terrorism College, Nonwa-Tai, Rivers State, those from the Police Commands from the North and the South-West will be trained at the Police Mobile Force Training College, Ende, Nasarawa State and the Police Mobile Force Training College, Ila-Orangun, Osun State, respectively.”
kanyiDaily recalls that President Muhammadu Buhari had assured Nigerians in a video broadcast that disbanding of SARS was the first step to “extensive police reforms”.