DESPITE CALLS FOR HIS REMOVAL OVER HANDLING OF ENDSARS PROTESTS, IGP ADAMU LOBBIES FOR TENURE EXTENSION

ADELANI ADEPEGBA

Amidst the call for his removal by #EndSARS protesters, the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has launched strong lobbying for his tenure extension.

Already, Adamu has written a memo to the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd), to solicit tenure extension, but it was learnt the Presidency had yet to respond to his request.

The IG, who is expected to retire from service in January, was also said to have engaged the services of highly placed persons, including some northern emirs and retired police chiefs to prevail on the President to give him an extension of at least six months.

Adamu reportedly hinged his desire on the need for him to complete the ongoing reforms of the Nigeria Police Force which is taking off under his administration.

Our correspondent had earlier reported that the police boss may not benefit from the provisions of the Nigeria Police Act 2020 assented to by the President last month.

The new law prescribed, among others, a four-year single tenure for the office of the Inspector-General of Police.

A source had said Adamu, who was appointed in January 2019, would not benefit from the new law on account of age, having clocked the mandatory 35 years in service.

It was learnt that the fixed four-year single tenure would commence with the next IG who may be appointed by the President in February.

According to the new law, the person to be appointed as IG shall be a senior police officer not below the rank of an Assistant Inspector-General of Police with not less than a first degree or its equivalent in addition to professional and management experience.

However, findings by Sunday PUNCH indicated that the police chief has been pulling strings to stay in office beyond his retirement date, citing the need to drive the reform process and the tenure extended to the service chiefs by the President.

It was gathered that his chances of getting the extension may not be bright as many AIGs are also interested in the position, while some governors have candidates for the office.

A highly placed source noted that the National Security Adviser, Maj Gen Babagana Monguno (retd.), and the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof Ibrahim Gambari, would largely influence the choice of a new IG.

The source said, “Having regained entry into the inner caucus in the Presidency following the death of the former Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, the NSA has recovered his clout as the man in charge of national security, and he, alongside Gambari, would influence the choice of the next IG. For now, IG Adamu can only pray and hope; nothing is certain.”

As part of moves to remain in office, Adamu has been trying to reconcile with the Chairman, Police Service Commission, Musiliu Smith, with whom he has been having a running battle over the recruitment of constables.

The police boss on Wednesday sent emissaries to Smith, a member of the Nigeria Police Council which appoints the IG.

Our correspondent gathered that two former IGs, Mike Okiro and Suleiman Abba, visited the PSC chairman at his office in Abuja, following Smith’s refusal to meet with Adamu on several occasions.

Police sources affirmed that Okiro and Abba spent hours trying to persuade Smith to reconcile with the IG.

The official who was privy to the meeting said, “The commission chairman refused to be persuaded by Okiro and Suleiman Abba. He said each time they met, Adamu would act contrary to their agreements afterwards and this has happened several times. He told them that the IG should pursue the recruitment case to a logical conclusion since he has filed an appeal at the Supreme Court.”

Okiro could not be reached for comment on his mediatory roles as he did not respond to calls on Friday

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