Daily Trust

Deploy SARS for B/Haram war, Borno gov

- From Misbahu Bashir & Olatunji Omirin, Maiduguri

Borno State Governor, Professor Bababgana Zulum, on Tuesday, asked the police authority to send officers attached to the defunct Special AntiRobber­y Squad (SARS) to the state to participat­e in the fight against Boko Haram insurgents.

The police unit was dissolved and its personnel redeployed to other formations following nationwide protests against the high-handedness of its personnel.

Zulum made the call when a delegation led by the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Argebesola, met him at Government House, Maiduguri.

He said officers attached to the defunct unit had played a role in counterins­urgency operations by using their energy and aggression against Boko Haram terrorists.

"We are not in support of brutality by any security outfit, but to be sincere, here in Borno State, the efforts of SARS operatives in the counterins­urgency operations need not to be overemphas­ised.

"They are doing a wonderful job in containing the security situation in Borno State. They have greatly supplement­ed the efforts of the Nigerian Military." Zulum said.

Similarly, the Borno State House of Assembly yesterday aligned with the call of Governor Zulum for the defunct SARS personnel to be deployed to the state to complement the effort of the military in the fight against insurgency.

The House made the submission during Tuesday’s plenary session in Maiduguri chaired by the Deputy Speaker, Hon Abdullahi Askira.

“We are in dire need of the services of SARS personnel in the state due to our peculiar challenges,” Askira added.

In a related developmen­t, a network of interest groups on Tuesday staged a peaceful protest within Maiduguri to express concern on the security situation in the North East region with a view to drawing the attention of the relevant stakeholde­rs to provide a lasting solution, especially Borno State.

The protesters also made a case for SARS in handling insecurity situations.

The protesters included organised labour, student unions, traders, and women’s groups among others.

Speaking for the groups, former Chairman, Nigerian Bar Associatio­n, Borno State Branch, Barr. Mohammed Maigana, said, “We want the president to return SARS or, if possible, those in 35 states should be posted here and fight the insurgency. I can assure you within one month, Boko Haram will end because of what we have seen their commanders doing.”

The state’s Deputy Governor, Umar Usman Kadafur, who received the protesters promised to deliver their message to President Muhammadu Buhari.

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