The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has announced the formation of a new crime unit to replace the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS). The new unit is called Special Weapons and Tactics team (SWAT).
Prospective recruits to the new unit would undergo tactical training next week, in addition to psychological and medical examinations to ascertain their fitness and eligibility for the new assignment.
A statement by the Force spokesman, Frank Mba, in Abuja on Tuesday, disclosed that the personnel from 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 in 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.
The statement was entitled, ‘IGP orders all defunct SARS personnel to report at the force headquarters for psychological and medical examination’.
It also disclosed that the IGP had 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 the process as a prelude to further training and reorientation before being redeployed into mainstream policing duties.
The statement read, “The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, 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, 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 psychiatrists, psychologists, medics, pastors and imams, public relations practitioners, civil society and other human rights groups with relevant qualifications and expertise.
While reaffirming his commitment towards the successful and holistic implementation of police reforms, the IG enjoined members of the public, particularly protesting citizens to “exercise restraint and allow measures being put in place to come to fruition and engender a police force that would meet the yearnings and aspirations of the citizenry.”