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SANs fault IG’s three months tenure extension

A legal practitioner, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa (SAN), on Thursday faulted the extension of the tenure of the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, by three months saying it cannot be done without the advice of the Nigeria Police Council.

The Minister of Police Affairs, Mohammad Dingyadi, on Thursday said the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), decided to extend Adamu’s tenure as the IGP for three months “to allow for a robust and efficient process of appointing a new IG.”

The minister disclosed this in an interview with State House correspondents at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Recall that Adamu’s tenure ought to have expired on Monday when he attained 35 years in service.

Adamu remained at his duty post since Monday, fuelling speculation that his tenure could have been ‘secretly’ extended.

The situation made a lawyer, Maxwell Okpara, to ask a Federal High Court in Abuja to stop Adamu from parading himself as the IGP forthwith.

Read more: Governors hail IGP for banning FSARS

Justifying the three-month extension, however, Dingyadi said it was meant to ensure that a right officer was appointed to replace Adamu.

The minister said, “Mr President has decided that the present IGP, Mohammed Adamu, will continue to serve as the IG for the next three months to allow for a robust and efficient process of appointing a new IGP.

“This is not unconnected to the desire of Mr President to, not only have a smooth handover, but to also ensure that the right officer is appointed into that position. Mr President is extending by three months to allow him get into the process of allowing a new one.”

However, a legal practitioner, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa (SAN), on Thursday maintained that the Nigeria Police Council must be involved in the extension of the IG’s tenure.

According to him, having served the mandatory years of service, the IGP ceased to be a member of the Nigeria Police Force from the date of his completion of his service.

Adegboruwa made the clarification in a statement titled, ‘The purported extension of the expired tenure of Mr. Adamu as Inspector-General of Police is illegal and unconstitutional.’

He cited Section 215 (1)(a) of 1999 Constitution which stipulated that “there shall be an Inspector-General of Police who, subject to Section 216(2) of this Constitution shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the Nigeria Police Council from among serving members of the Nigeria Police Force.”

According to him, Section 216(2) said, “Before making any appointment to the office of the Inspector-General of Police or removing him from office, the President shall consult the Nigeria Police Council.”

Adegboruwa said, “From all the above, when the tenure of a serving IGP expires on the ground of completing the mandatory 35 years of service, he cannot be asked to continue in office beyond his mandatory tenure.

“An IGP who has served the mandatory years of service ceases to be a member of the Nigeria Police Force from the date of his completion of his service. In this case, Mr Adamu ceases to be a member of the NPF from February 2, 2021.

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