Students’ harassment: NAPS urge IGP Idris to call SARS to order

The National Association of Polytechnic Students(NAPS), on Wednesday called the attention of the Inspector General of Police(IGP), Ibrahim Kpotum Idris, over the harassment of students by operatives of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad(SARS).

NAPS in a statement issued on its behalf by Olaunkanmi Ijaduoye, Vice President (External Affairs), accused SARS of unlawfully arresting students in Lagos and Ogun States and putting people’s lives in danger in the process.

The students’ body alleged that SARS operatives of violating the privacy of students through the conducting “stop and search” operations, which involves requesting for phones of students and accompanying them to Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) to extort money from them. The statement addressed to the IGP read in part:

“We are letting you know that the SARS officers under your watch undergo unlawful arrest of our responsible, hardworking and visionary students across the nation. It has gone to the extent of taking up their mobile phones, requesting for the unlock codes and even accompanying them to Automated Teller Machines (ATM) so they could get some cash from them.

“More annoying is that students cannot freely take up legit vehicles from one location to another. Their personal computers now become the officers at watch computer on no basis of crime detection. These acts are all carried out under gun harassment like that of a thief seeking for cash in a chief’s mansion.

“We consider this act as too embarrassing, an affront on the civic rights of our students and a monumental embarrassment on all good officers across the length and breadth of Nigeria. Your officers will then go ahead spread spurious, malicious and unfounded information, that the students were caught with dangerous weapons, foreign pictures or stolen cash. We make bold to affirm that majority of the arrest are far from being true, it is a deliberate ploy by the officers so they could get some cash from them”.

The students noted that as much as they are law abiding citizens of the country, they had become weary of the continued harassment of their colleagues by policemen and would henceforth “no longer tolerate any harassment, ungodly behavior and unconstitutional act from your officers”.
They called on the IGP to urgently consider their plight and wade in to control his men and stop the continued harassment of students.