A Nigerian banker, @Mistayemi on Twitter, has shared the story of how he was allegedly harrased and extorted by officers of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Nigerian police in Lagos.
The young man was on his way to the US Embassy when he was stopped and driven away in a van by the SARS operatives just minutes before his appointment.
He was eventually freed after making a transfer of 35,000 naira into an account that was given to him by one of them.
Read the full gist below:
"I wonder if there is still any hope for this country, I got my own share of the SARS intimidation & (harass)ment last week Mon. June10. Close to d front of d US embassy@ VI, lagos. I came down from d keke, as I was making my way into d embassy, I was stopped and accosted by 3 SARS guys, they asked me 'who are u' I identified myself through my work id card I was carrying & I explained to them I have an appointment at d us embassy in the next 27mins. Suddenly one of them shouted 'we would delay u and make u miss ur appointment if u don't cooperate.
"At this point i was confused, like how else am I suppose to respond or cooperate? The same guy that shouted came close to me and snatched my folder containing my docs n dragged me into their van. I was still shocked n surprised.. So they drove to nearby police post.
"I kept reminding them I can't afford to miss my appointment which is in like 10mins, the SARS guys knowing how important my appointment is held on to my docs & said they won't release it to me until I settle them with #200,000 @ this point I was speechless and in more shock.
"I kept checking my time n reminding them abt my appointment. To cut d story short..1 of them called me aside n said he knows how important this my appointment is that I shld not jeopardise my chance @ d embassy, he said 'how much u get' , told him I only have 2k cash with me.
"For d sake of my appointment @ the embassy I was made to make a fund transfer of #35,000 into one (of) them..Name. Blessing Macklon Access bank. 0763903325 before my docs were released to me, I got back to d embassy late but was still able to meet up.
"This is not d Nigeria of our dream..this is not d Nigeria we all hope to boost of... I won't rest until I get down this person I av d details. I work in a bank..that's y I was able to dig more details. The recipient of the #35,000 is a female and d details are below," he rounded up before sharing the details.
The Complaint Response Unit of the police force has acknowledged receipt of his report and promised to start an investigation into the matter.