We will compensate victims of SARS killings – Gov Sanwo-Olu tells protesters, vows to meet all their demands

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has said that the state government will compensate victims of Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) killings in the state.

Sanwo-Olu gave the assurance on Monday while addressing the #EndSARS protesters who blocked the Lekki Toll Gate.

He said that the compensation and other agitations of the protesters would be addressed amicably, and urged them to calm down.

The governor, who read out some of the names of the people who were victims of SARS excesses, assured the youths that the government would get to the families and compensate them.

According to him, the voices of the youths have been heard, and the conversation should now be on the next step forward.

Sanwo-Olu said that he would take their demands directly to President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja by Tuesday.

Recall that the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu, had on Sunday announced the dissolution of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad following days of protests over reported cases of harassment, extortion and extra-judicial killings.

Despite the disbandment, #EndSARS protesters, in the early hours of Monday stormed the Lekki Toll Gate section of the Lekki-Epe Expressway, Lagos, to resume demonstrations, saying that mere statement from the IGP was insufficient.

The development led to several hours of gridlock in which commuters and motorists on their way to work were caught up, while others returned home.

IGP Adamu had also said that a new policing arrangement to replace the dissolved police unit would be announced in due course.

He said that all officers of the disbanded SARS had been redeployed with “immediate effect”.

Meanwhile, the protesters on Monday demanded that the police authorities “carry out psychological evaluation and re-training of all disbanded SARS officers before they are redeployed.”

They also demanded the “release of all arrested protesters, justice for all deceased victims of police brutality, and appropriate compensation for their families.”

They also demanded “increased salaries for police officers as well as the establishment of an independent body to oversee the investigation and prosecution of police misconduct within 10 days.

Meanwhile, President Buhari said on Monday that the disbandment of the SARS was the first step to extensive police reforms by his administration.

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