Nigerians Demand is Clear, End Police Brutality, Not Name Change

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Mr. Mohammed Adamu, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) in response to the #EndSars protest on Tuesday replaced the Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) name to Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT).

Good as this may sound in the ears of IG and his men, changing SARS’ name to SWAT clearly shows the IG does not understand what the issues are and thinks citizens’ demand for police reform can only be addressed by simply a name change.

It is either the IG does not have a clear understanding of citizens’ demand or has chosen to ignore them and adopted the old method of brushing the real issues aside and continue with the old order of policing in Nigeria.

This is not the first time we have seen a name change in the police operation unit, what has not happened is accountability in the police operation which is what Nigerians currently demand from police and government.

In a sane clime, the IG of police ought to have resigned because police failed woefully under his watch, but in Nigeria where resigning from office is a taboo, the IG ought to have immediately started the process of reforming the police with given a standing order to his men not to brutalize Nigerians while making some of the deviant officers scapegoats.

Lest the IG forget, Nigerians poured out on the street to demand #EndSars because they have lost hope in the way police operate with impunity while minimal or none accountability in their action is a norm.

The change of name from SARS to SWAT does not in any way translate an end to police brutality which Nigerians have placed before the government.

Media Advocacy West Africa Foundation (MAWA) joins other Nigerians to demand that IG and the Nigerian government immediately start the process of total police reform and end to police brutality.

– Audu Liberty Oseni
Coordinator, Media Advocacy West Africa Foundation (MAWA – Foundation)

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