The Police Service Commission has expressed sentiments of concern to President Muhammadu Buhari over the delay in the appointment of a new Police Force boss.
Their concerns stem from the fact that the president’s delay in appointing a new Inspector General of Police (IGP), poses a contravention to the provisions of the Police Act 2020, which in Section 7 (6), fixes a single term of four years without an option of extension of tenure for the holder of the office of the Inspector-General of Police.
It reads: “A person appointed to the office of the Inspector-General of Police shall hold office for four years”, while Section 18 (8) of the Act signed by President Muhammadu Buhari on September 15, 2020, states the length of service of a police officer thus; “Every police officer shall, on recruitment or appointment, serve in the police force for 35 years or until he attains the age of 60 years, whichever is earlier.”
TheFact Nigeria had earlier reported that the Police boss, Mahammed Adamu, was expected to bow out of office on February 1, following his attaining the age of 60.
Reliable sources have revealed that the Police Service Commission (PSC), which is saddled with the responsibility of recruitment, discipline and promotion of officers of the force, have not only brought these concerns to the attention of the president, but have also advised against extending Adamu’s tenure.
The PSC feels an extension of the tenure of the current Inspector-General may dampen the morale of the rank and file, particularly the morale of officers whose promotion might be stagnated due to lack of vacancies which the domino effect of the retirement would have created. The Commission cited the case of the military, when the tenure of service chiefs was extended for years.
Feelers, however, are that the president might have extended the IG’s tenure by an initial period of six months, considering that, as at yesterday, a day after his scheduled retirement, Adamu was still carrying out the functions of his office, including presiding over a meeting of the police management team, and was also part of top government officials who received President Muhammadu Buhari at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja on his arrival from Daura, Katsina State, where he had gone on a four-day official visit.
It is being debated that extending Adamu’s tenure will violate the Police Act 2020, which prescribes a non-renewable single term of four years for the incumbent IG.
A source within the presidency disclosed that Adamu would, however, have to remain in office until after a farewell meeting with the president, which is not likely to hold so soon, explaining that it is not in the character of Buhari to let go such a senior appointee without inviting him to a farewell meeting during which he will formally thank him for a job well done and inform him of the choice of his successor.
TheFact had also earlier reported that amid the uncertainties over the leadership of the police, the process of picking the next IGP was in progress as Buhari was scrutinizing a list of candidates, presented by the PSC, from which he would pick the successor.
Meanwhile, as the race to succeed Adamu fires up, influential blocs have intensified lobbying to ensure the emergence of their preferred candidate.
A source revealed that Northern leaders, including a powerful emir in one of the states in the North-west, were rooting for one of the newly-promoted Assistant Inspectors-General of Police (AIG), Dasuki Galadanci from Kano State, to take over from Adamu.
It was gathered that, should the president give in to the pressure of the Northern leaders, no fewer than 23 Deputy Inspectors-General of Police (DIGs) and AIGs would be retired.
However, should Adamu’s tenure extension be formally approved, the 23 DIGs and AIGs will be saved from premature retirements