Shocking! How UK trained, armed Nigeria’s notorious SARS unit (Must read)

 

The United Kingdom Government provided training and equipment to the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police.

On Thursday, Minister for Africa, James Duddridge admitted British officials trained the operatives between 2016 and 2020.

Now disbanded, SARS acted with impunity, killing and torturing citizens.

Their excesses birthed the End SARS nationwide protests and calls for an end to police brutality.

The UK had initially denied any ties with the police unit.

In a memo to Labour MP, Kate Osamor on Thursday, Duddridge said SARS officers participated in training “designed to improve human rights, training on public finance, and community policing workshops”.

The official verified that radio equipment was given to Nigeria Police for the notorious division.

“It is shocking that in the middle of global protests to End SARS our government appears to have had no idea whether or not it was funding those very units”,

Osamor told The Independent.

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The lawmaker recalled that Duddridge told her earlier this month that no funding ever made its way to SARS.

The minister in a October 19 letter stated that the Foreign Office “does not provide and has not provided any support or training to SARS units or officers”.

Duddridge said it was in support of UK’s wider objectives to strengthen the capability, accountability and responsiveness of the Nigeria Police.

Osamor noted that Britain has now been forced to admit that it not only spent millions training SARS but also supplied equipment.

“The government now needs to explain how and why it ever felt it was appropriate to train and equip security forces which were known to have taken part in torture and extra-judicial killings”,

The MP added.

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