Inspector-General of Police Olukayode Egbetokun has inaugurated the Special Intervention Squad (SIS) in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
The squad, tasked with patrolling and securing border towns within the territory, aims to swiftly respond to and mitigate violent attacks.
The Nigeria Police Force, in late 2023, disclosed plans to deploy 40,000 operatives of the SIS, currently undergoing training, starting with Katsina and nine other states, including the FCT. Notably, the proposed commanders of the squad will undergo training in Mexico.
Egbetokun emphasized that the SIS will serve as a standby team of specially trained officers, intervening in significant security incidents. The deployment in the 10 selected states is viewed as a pilot program for the SIS.
During a recent event in Owerri, the IG stated that the remaining 27 states would follow the 10 pilot states based on a recent violent crime assessment. Force Public Relations Officer ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi clarified that the SIS would not operate similarly to the defunct Special Anti-Kidnapping Squad known for human rights abuses.
Adejobi assured the public that SIS operatives, drawn from the Police Mobile Force and other units, would not be engaged in escort duties. The commanders of the squads will operate under the command of Commissioners of Police in their respective states.
He emphasized, “The SIS is not SARS. It is comprised of operational personnel, including Police Mobile Force operatives and tactical squad members, specifically for intervention purposes. The Standard Operating Procedures and Rules of Engagement are distinct, and deployment will be at the discretion of Commissioners of Police based on security needs.”
The Force is conducting thorough training for SIS commanders, including a train-the-trainer course in Mexico. The IG has provided the necessary equipment for the SIS to commence operations. Adejobi reiterated, “The SIS is a very different squad,” emphasizing their focus on intervention and adherence to unique operational protocols.