The Rivers State Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS has been accused of partisanship as the indicted Commander of the squad, Akin Fakorede and some operatives of the unit reportedly participated in airport ceremony and fanfare for the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi and the defeated Rivers State APC Governorship Candidate, Mr. Dakuku Peterside.
Fakorede and his men reportedly joined in the singing and dancing by APC members to the chagrin of passengers and other by-standers at the Port Harcourt International Airport.
The development was said to have left those who watched the scenario wondering why operatives of the Nigeria Police would descend so low to the level of getting involved in active partisan politics.
Fakorede who was spotted at the foot of the aircraft receiving the politicians, was caught on camera holding an umbrella for the defeated Rivers APC governorship candidate, Dakuku Peterside to shield him from the rain. The APC leaders, it was gathered, were in the state to finalise plans for the party’s street protest in support of the embattled SARS commander.
The SARS Commander was indicted for allegedly using operatives of the squad to promote kidnapping and armed robbery on two Federal Highways in Rivers State. The Official Police Signal with the title: “Police Wireless Message “ and Reference Number DT0: 121030/09/2017 —INGENPOL-X-FHQ ABUJA TO-INGENPOL SEC ABUJA, noted that the squad received a distress call on the kidnap of one Mr. Ifeanyi and immediately swung into action.
According to the signal, three SARS operatives were robbing and a gun duel ensued. The operatives, it was gathered, had taken Mr. Ifeanyi to a Fidelity Bank ATM machine where they compelled him to withdraw N500,000 as ransom. One of the SARS Operatives was killed, while Inspector Justice Nyeche who led the IGP team was injured. Prior to the latest incident, Fakorede was allegedly caught on video invading the Rivers East Senatorial District collation centre on December 12, 2016 in an attempt to snatch the results of the district. And recently, operatives of SARS in Rivers State were accused of killing a taxi driver in cold blood for inexplicable reasons. It will be recalled that the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike had at a press conference alerted Nigerians on the negative activities of the SARS Commander, which has led to disruption in the state’s security architecture. Governor Wike said: “Most of the kidnappings and armed robberies taking place in this state are done by men of SARS. They use exhibit vehicles to operate. As the Chief Security Officer of the state, you complain, but they choose to play politics with crime.
“They fight crime in some states, but they refuse to fight crime in Rivers State.
We are done with the elections, but they are using SARS to create insecurity in the state.
“As I speak with you, they will deny. But the SARS Operative who was killed was amongst those who raided the Rivers East Senatorial District collation centre. This man can be identified in the video as one of those who invaded the collation centre with Fakorede.”
The governor stated that the deliberate acts of violence being perpetrated by the Police have been planned as part of the rigging process for 2019