Muslim scholars have thrown their full weight behind the on-going call for the reforms of the Poloce force in Nigeria. A renowned Muslim scholar, Abu Baba, a report by Muslim News read, condemned any form of harassment and killings of innocent Nigerians, adding that caution must be observed before wading into such a contentious issue so that the wrong steps are not taken. “Many Muslim youths wanted us to react but we do not follow the multitude. You sit-down and look perfectly at the problems, and then proffer solutions.
“For example, what is SARS? Special Anti-Robber Squad. When you bring it down, what happens to armed robbery? What happens to banditry? What happens to other crimes they’re trying to eradicate in the society?” The report quoted Baba to have said. “But people are still boiling, making emotional outbursts. This is, in fact, not the first time people have been calling for the scrapping of SARS. So, we need to let the dust settle first before speaking on the issue,” he added.
Some Islamic organisations, according to Muslim News, couldn’t join the protest because the protesters have no directors and could be easily hijacked by hooodlums. According to Baba, “Another major issue was that #EndSARS, like our government, lacked direction. “This is obvious since it had no directors. You can imagine how Yahoo Boys hijacked the Ajah end in Lagos and some hoodlums hijacked that of Surulere end”.
The first Amir (President) of The Muslim Congress (TMC) stated that the problem with SARS is endemic, adding that there is an element of SARS in every Nigerian. “Also, what is wrong with SARS that is not wrong with Nigerians? Not only the policemen collect bribes, military men at checkpoints collect bribes. There is another trend of bribery and corruption in the hospitals. You want to submit application in a federal government agency, they seek money. They said SARS is killing innocent people. Are Nigerians too not killing themselves? So, there is an element of SARS in every Nigerian, which needs to be reformed.
“It is as if that name SARS is what is wrong. But people are really missing the point. They should go back to the origin of SARS and trace what went wrong, then correct it. Fortunately, if our people are not lazy and docile, the man who commenced the operation of SARS, a former police commissioner Simeon Danladi Midenda, has been interviewed. He’s from the North-Central. He explained where SARS went wrong and what can be done to reform it.”
The veteran broadcaster with the Voice of Nigeria (VON) said the SARS founder’s exposition reminded him of a memorable event. According to him, “When I was Amir (Leader) of The Muslim Congress (TMC), we were trying to set up Traffic Unit. We partnered with LASTMA officials to train our members. The only training I attended was where one man called Mr Agbomeji addressed us. He said LASTMA would run into trouble the day it is commercialised because its officials will intervene in issues that are not part of its mandate.
Is that not happening? Responding to allegations that the silence on the part of Islamic organisations was due to the love for President Buhari, Abu Baba said, “This may be so for some people, it is not so for me and Scholars that I relate with. It is true that we joined the demonstration against fuel price hike during President Jonathan’s administration. However, you need to note the following differences.” Speaking further, “First, the goal was defined and definite. We knew why we were going out and we were fully prepared.”