Extension of IGP’s tenure unconstitutional – Ozekhome
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mike Ozekhome, on Thursday described as unconstitutional and questionable the decision of President Muhammadu Buhari to extend the tenure of the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu.
Adamu, who joined the Nigeria Police Force on February 1, 1986, attained the mandatory 35 years in service on Monday.
But the Minister of Police Affairs, Mohammad Dingyadi, told the State House correspondents that the President has extended the IGP’s tenure for three months.
Ozekhome, who featured in a Channels Television’s programme, Politics Today, insisted that President Buhari was wrong by extending Adamu’s stay as the country’s number police officer.
He said: “The President was wrong, the President was wrong and the President was wrong to have purportedly extended the tenure of office of Mr. Adamu. That he was going to retire on the 1st of February was not a surprise, everybody knows that he was born in 1961, everybody knows that he joined the Nigeria Police Force 35 years ago.
“Did you not see what happened in America that we modeled our democracy after? Before Biden was sworn in on the 20th of January, he had already assembled his cabinet, a rainbow coalition, a Dolly Parton’s coat of many colours.
“By their features you will see them –Blacks, Hispanics, Americans, Jews, Chinese, Russians, Arabs, African-Americans.
“Why do we always wait till the last moment to begin to adopt the fire brigade approach and then do the things that are unconstitutional, illegal, unlawful, questionable, arbitrary, whimsical, capricious as the present act of Mr. President has done. Don’t Mr. President’s handlers know that they are embarrassing Mr. President and Nigeria?
“We have to look at Section 7, Sub-section 6 of the Nigeria Police Act 2020, what does it say? In very emphatic, categorically words, it says that the Inspector General of Police shall serve for four years. Has Adamu served for four years? No. Would he, therefore, continue in office? No.
“Why? Section 18, Sub-section 8 of the same Nigeria Police Act 2020 makes it clear, unambiguously that the Inspector General of Police shall retire from office when he would have served for 35 years or he has attained the age of 65 years.
“Granted that Adamu, born in 1961 being the 20th Inspector General of Police has not attained the age of 65 but he has served 35 years and he ended that 35 years on the 1st of February 2021.
“Adamu has served this country to the best of his abilities, why don’t you let him retire quietly to his village in Lafia, Nasarawa State and allow him to enjoy his retirement?”