Protests to Denounce Alleged Police Brutality are Ongoing

Oct 13, 2020

As of 12 October 2020, protests to denounce alleged police brutality are ongoing in several cities across Nigeria, including in Abuja, Ilorin, Jos and Lagos. Traffic disruptions have been reported in Abuja and Lagos, but there have been no reports of clashes thus far on 12 October. The chief of the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) disbanded its Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) unit the previous day amid nationwide protests against accusations of brutality committed by the squad. Despite the disbanding of SARS, protesters have called for continued demonstrations to demand justice for victims of police brutality. Protests initially broke out on 7 October after a video circulated on social media showing several SARS members shooting and killing a man in Delta state. Police officers clashed with demonstrators during several of the protests, including in Abuja city and Ogbomoso, located in Oyo state — using live ammunition and tear gas to disperse crowds. During clashes in Ogbomoso, at least one protester was shot and killed while seven other individuals were injured. Protesters allege that SARS members were responsible for the casualties, but police officers deny these allegations and it remains unclear who fired live ammunition. Additional protests also occurred in cities across the states of Abuja, Delta, Kwara, Lagos, Osun and Plateau.

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