Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN) says the State Security Service of Nigeria, also known as the Department of State Services (DSS) is not empowered by any law to make arrests or detain anyone.
Falana stated this on Thursday at a media session titled, “Forget the past, forfeit the future: A nation seceding from humanity”.
According to him, the SSS also known as DSS is an underground police unit, required to gather information and give it to the police to process, not to make arrests.
He called on the Nigerian media and other stakeholders to change the status quo, and challenge the killers of the people.
The legal luminary also noted that security operatives, at weekend, now arrest young people on no legal grounds and take them to the various offices where they are extorted.
He noted, “Let us decide to say in 2023, we will change the course of history but if you go about looking for those who voted for (Muhammadu) Buhari in 2015 and 2019, you will waste a lot of time and divert attention.
“I’m not part of this ethnic agenda. Some of you will say some parties are small, some of us prefer to vote for those candidates because we also believe you can challenge the status quo.
“Let us now begin to challenge killers of our people, challenge slave traders in this modern era. Let us begin to challenge those who are making money every day from arresting and detaining people.
“Every police station now, at weekends, young people are arrested on the streets and asked ‘what do you do?’ And they are taken to either SSS, EFCC (Economic and Financial Crimes Commission) and the rest.
“I have said this publicly, there is no section of the law that allows the SSS to arrest anybody or detain anybody. Please if you see an SSS official, ask them what section of the law allows them.
“The DSS is an underground police unit, it is E-branch, to get information and give to the police to process but now they’re wearing uniform, masks in a modern society so please these are the issues to address.”