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02.04.2019 Nigeria

Police Team Held After Nigeria Football Fan Shot Dead

By AFP
The weekend shooting renewed public anger over police units like the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), seen here in Kano in February, whose members have been accused of brutality, extra-judicial killings and exortion.  By PIUS UTOMI EKPEI (AFP/File)
APR 2, 2019 NIGERIA
The weekend shooting renewed public anger over police units like the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), seen here in Kano in February, whose members have been accused of brutality, extra-judicial killings and exortion. By PIUS UTOMI EKPEI (AFP/File)

Members of a police squad suspected of killing a Nigerian football fan in Lagos have been detained for questioning, a force spokesman said after an outcry online.

Kolade Johnson was watching a match involving English Premier League club Liverpool on Sunday afternoon when he was hit by a stray bullet fired by police.

The killing sparked public outrage and renewed opposition to the police units such as the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), which has become synonomous with brutality, extra-judicial killings, torture, extortion and impunity.

A video of Johnson's body was shared more than 200,000 times on Twitter with the hashtag #EndSARS.

Lagos police spokesman Bala Elkana said in a statement late Monday: "Members of the team suspected to be involved in the shooting have since been arrested and are currently in police custody undergoing interrogation.

"They will be subjected to internal disciplinary procedures, and may be prosecuted in (a) conventional court if implicated by ongoing investigation."

Activists told AFP that campaigning against SARS and similar units had improved the situation but a change in senior personnel earlier this year had led to a deterioration.

Amnesty International joined condemnation of the killing. It has long campaigned against police brutality in Nigeria.

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