A Port Harcourt resident who goes by the name Odeyemi Michael has alleged that disbanded men of Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) robbed him of N400,000 in Port Harcourt, the River State capital. Newsonline reports that Odeyemi Micheal who took to social media network, twitter, to narrate the incident said, the disbanded SARS men, arrested him alongside with his friends while they boarded a bolt service in Rivers State.
Odeyemi Michael alleged that the suspected disbanded SARS men, picked him and forced him to enter their Sienna van. He said the suspected SARS men asked him to pay N5 million, after they had checked his phone and bank account balance through his Gmail account.
Odeyemi Michael alleged that the suspected SARS men threatened to shoot him if he fails to comply with them. Narrating the alleged incidence on twitter, Odeyemi Michael said; “Good evening, I just got picked up by SARS yesterday, they picked me up from a bolt with my guys, paid the bolt guy and told him to leave, told us to enter a sienna, they checked my phone and my guys phones too, they saw nothing, then they checked my bank account balance from my Gmail app.
“After driving a long distance, they dropped my guys and told me to stay put inside their car, they kept slapping me, and calling me a yahoo boy. They handcuffed me, took me to an unknown place, and told me to pay 5m, I said I didn’t have such amount of money, they then told me to make calls and used a recorder to record me where they forced me to admit I was a yahoo boy, and I want to give them 2m to be free.
“After I called, my guys were gingering them and telling them to leave me alone that I am innocent, they then told me they are taking me to Bayelsa, that I called police for them, they drove till they got to Elele, note I have been with them since 3pm and this was about 7pm.
“They told me if they take me inside bush nobody is going to do anything, after much begging, I was forced to pay 400k, after which I was dropped on the road in another state. They waited till the alert came then they deleted it. Gave me N500 to use as transport and go home, they took my phone number and said they will call me.”
The Nigeria Police had on several occasions in statements stated that the security unit has no Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS). The Nigeria Police therefore asked citizens who have encountered with such persons that claim to be SARS to report them to the police authority.
However, Odeyemi Michael case triggered a lot of citizens reacting to the same alleged disbanded SARS men robbing them at different occasions. Elvis Romario, a twitter user, who commented on Odeyemi Micheal story stated, “this happened to me too at that same Elele road yesterday. They took me to Ahoada and withdrew everything inside my bank account (170k) and also took the 21k in my pocket. I pretended to be making a call while he was busy counting the money and I took a video of him.”
Reacting to the robbery case Odeyemi Michael narrated, that the Bolt commercial service company in Rivers, has responded to him; According to their statements which reads; “Hello, we are really sad to hear what happened to you. Unfortunately, we are not allowed to request your details on a social media platform due to global data policies. Please contact us via the Support section in Bolt app. Our safety team will be waiting for your message.”
Force Headquarters in Abuja, in October 2020, banned SARS and other tactical squads including the Special Tactical Squad (STS), Intelligence Response Team (IRT), Anti-Cultism Squad and other tactical squads operating at the federal, zonal and command levels due to the high complaints they have received about the formulated squads and had to disband it after receiving directives from the presidency.
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