Idris’ Appointment, Like A Whirlwind, Consumes Top Cops | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Idris’ Appointment, Like A Whirlwind, Consumes Top Cops

Posted: Jul 10, 2016 at 4:22 am   /   by   /   comments (0)






The recent appointment of Mr. Kpotum Idris as Acting Inspector general of Police (IGP) by President Muhammadu Buhari has swept of many top police officers in the cadre of Assistant Inspectors General (AIG) and Deputy Inspectors General (DIG) into early retirement.

While this development is not new in the police and other security agencies, Nigerians are queering the lightening speed with which Idris moved within the space of 12 months, from the level of a state police commissioner to becoming the IG.

They recall that Idris was in Kano during the 2015 presidential election where the All Progressives Congress (APC) recorded the controversial 1.9 million votes, without a single voided ballot. Few days after the election, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) and his entire family were killed in a mysterious fire incident thatgutted their house. There was however, no trace of any foul play in the incident till date.

His profile

The new Nigeria acting Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Kpotun Idris, is reputed to be one of the rare talented police officers Nigeria is bestowed with. Idris is said to have virtually acquired all the trainings needed to face the challenges of security in modern time anywhere in the world. He started his police career in 1984 when he joined the Force as Cadet ASP after which he was posted as Gusau Police Divisional Crime Officer in 1986 and later Unit Commander 7PMF Sokoto between 1987 and 1989.

Because of his excellent performance, competence, unique performance, commitment to duty and doggedness, Idris was elevated to the rank of Deputy Police Commissioner (Operations) and Second-in-Command at the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor Leste UNMIT between 2009 to April 2011 and again, Acting Police Commissioner UNMIT.

In July of the same year, he was appointed Kano State Commissioner of Police, a position he held until February 2013 when he was selected to attend Senior Police Officers Course at Nigeria Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies Kuru (NIPSS) where he bagged the prestigious MNI membership.

He is a versatile officer, highly trained with administrative acumen, a combatant imbued with dexterity to perform and execute assignments with precision, and above all, an officer with diplomatic experience and approach. Having obtained two academic degrees in Law and Agriculture at Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria and University of Maiduguri, respectively, Idris also attended numerous courses and trainings in Nigeria and abroad and partook in several peace keeping missions in many countries of the world.

His Supersonic Speed Movement

Observers believe that since he was a state police commissioner just a year ago, Idris has moved very fast ahead of his contemporaries in the remaining 35 states, including Abuja, and other commissioners in critical positions as the FCID, FU, Federal Admininstration, Federal Operations, etc. With the supersonic speed of his elevation within the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Nigerians are beginning to wonder what will become of the fate of his many contemporaries.

Since it is the tradition in the security forces and the military that when a junior officer is promoted above his seniors, those who were above him would be compulsorily retired, since a senior cannot salute a junior. Therefore, there is the fear that more heads may roll in the police as a result of Idris’ emergence as IG.

Buhari’s Appointments Violate Federal Character Principle

Abdulmumuni Dada, a politician and Quantity Surveyor, is of the view that the ministerial and other appointments made by President Buhari clearly violated the Federal Character principle as enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution. According to him, “The President is still living in the euphoria of a military dictator he has always being not minding that this is not the Nigeria he ruled under a military junta some years back, hence he does not believe in constitutional democracy, which is the basis of Nigeria’s unity, peace and progress.

“My fear is that Buhari may not be told the truth, that what he has done is a time bomb that will explode any moment. Nigerian Constitution laid solid foundation for the development of our country by predicating our national ethos on Freedom, Equity and Justice.

“Section 17 (1) of the Constitution provides that ‘The State social order is founded on ideals of Freedom, Equity and Justice.’ Now, instead of promoting democratic ideals that will foster peace and development, Buhari is doing things that are threatening to tear Nigeria apart by running a clannish government that places primordial interests above the collective interest of Nigerians and the result of this is that the entire system is collapsing and someone is busy there shouting corruption.

“Democratic deliverables are virtually absent-no electricity, no water and inflation is increasing geometrically by minutes while the economy is in comatose. By the time this political contraption of APC finishes with us, Nigerians will not only realise that they have been deceived, but forever regret that they have been deceived. But then it would have already been too late.”

Dada asked: “Where is the equity, justice and fairness in what this government is doing? Or, how will I defend this government before my in-laws from the Eastern part of the country or from South South that the government is for them and protecting their interest and that is why militancy and other regional uprising will not end soon.

“You can’t beat somebody and expect the person not to cry, look we are all humans and we have been over the years made to understand that as law abiding Nigerians we all have equal stake to the national economy, but with Buhari government it is government for the Fulani, Daura Emirate and core north in general.”

For Femi Abdul, a clergyman, President Buhari’s appointments and constitution of federal cabinet is completely contrary to what obtained in the past. He stressed: “I am a Yoruba man. But in all sincerity, federal character was jettisoned and this is not good for us as a people. I will not be far agreeing with some people who are of the opinion that what Buhari did or what he is doing is to pave way for his boys and to perfect his planned islamisation of the country and to reward his boys for well done jobs. Example is the current Acting IGP whose rise to his current position within one year has raised so much dust within the Nigerian Police Force.”

Idris’ Appointment Will Create Room For Deserving Officers – Lawyer

While the recent and untimely sack of senior of police officers following the appointment of Idris as the Acting IGP is most unfortunate as it can dampen the morale of other serving officers, a trade unionist, Comrade Taiye Neburagho of the National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG), Warri Unit, feels that it can lead to health challenges among the forcefully retired men.

He said: “The development can lead to in Cardiac arrest and the untimely death of some of them. Most of these retired officers could be special intelligence officer with specific security training in specialised area of policing and with the paucity of fund to the Police Force, with its attendant lack of overseas training to meet current security challenges, retiring some of these fine senior officers could be counter-productive.”

According to him, some of the retired officers had not attained the statutory retirement age and therefore were not prepared for sudden disengagement and being thrown into the saturated labour market. But, he added that they would prefer their retirement to serving under a very Junior Police Officer as IGP.

Neburagho, a social crusader, opined that Idris’ contemporaries would feel very uncomfortable with his meteoric rise and may not put in their best, even as they can gang up to ensure he does not succeed in creating or achieving his set goals and objectives through tactically sabotaging his genuine efforts. He therefore cautioned the IGP to be very vigilant and on the alert and be decisive, firm and resolute in the discharge of his duties.

Ete Odiete, a legal practitioner, however maintained that some of the sacked senior officers were due for retirement, adding that most of them might have falsified their age to remain in the service much longer than required and in the process, while those junior to them were being retired, they sat tight as underage, pretending to still have more years of service when in fact they constituted the clog in the wheel of the Nigerian Police Force.

Odiete said that with the retirement of these set of AIGs and DIGs, the next set of officers now have the hope and prospect for their overdue promotions, which would have multiplier effect on the rank and file who sometimes are forgotten when it comes to police welfare and other goodies.

He however questioned the rationale behind the sudden and meteoric rise of the new IGP from the rank of a Commissioner straight to Acting IGP when there are numerous Senior Police Commissioners ahead of him, saying that such practice can breed bad blood in the Force and should be discouraged.  He said that henceforth, due process should be adopted in future promotion in line with service regulations and requirements.

Odiete stated that the IGPs contemporaries would have no choice but to work with him if they do not want to be shown the way out because disloyalty and indiscipline cannot be condoned for any reasons whatsoever.

According to him, Idris’ contemporaries should work harder to be in his good books by going extra mile in the business policing in the face of the current security challenges confronting the country, both from the Boko Haram insurgents and the Niger Delta militants, including pockets of kidnappings, ritual killings, armed robberies and the menace of cattle herdsmen across the country.

This, he stressed, is the only worthy path of honour for the IGP’s contemporaries if they want to grow to other ranks during his tenure, adding that it is when they do their duty diligently that they will not be afraid of the top cop in any way.

Idris’ Elevation, A Compensation By Buhari –Don

Ayo Adesopo, a Professor of Public Administration, has described Idris’ appointment as Acting Inspector General of Police (IGP) as a compensation for his past good jobs for President Buhari.

He said that considering the speed with which he rose through the ranks within a year from State Commissioner to Inspector General (IG), he was indeed rewarded by the president for being “a good boy somehow.”

Adesopo of the Department of Public Administration, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, maintained that Idris might have done appreciable things to President Buhari to warrant the appointment and rapid promotion in the force. He, however, advised him to cautious while dealing with issues.

According to him, “Idris needed to show maturity and ensure that he displays high level of discipline and professionalism in the police force if he wants to succeed.”

He also warned that the new IGP must not allow himself to be used as tool in the hands of the federal establishment or by President Buhari, especially in fighting the opposition on the name of anti-corruption crusade.

Noting that Idris is coming ata time Nigeria is facing crucial challenges such as insecurity, insurgency and militancy in the Niger Delta, Adesopo advised the new IGP to play the game according to the rules  irrespective of tribe, political class and other considerations.

Adesopo who acknowledged that many of Idris’ contemporaries may be unhappy over his appointment, he urged him to be fair to all.

 His Appointment Is Political – NBA Chief

Barr Chukwuma Ebu, chairman of Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Asaba Branch, stated that the appointment of Idris as Acting IGP was political. He maintained that for such position, anybody could be appointed so long as he has the political contact.

Ebu, however, stated that the issue of appointment of new IGPs leading to the retirement of other top officers, saying his worry is the lopsided nature of the exercise.

Idris to Be Used to Rig Edo, Ondo And 2019 Polls – SDP Chieftain

Hon Oke Idawene, the Chairman, Social Democratic Party (SDP), Delta State, said that it is a usual practice that when a new IGP comes on board, former AIGs and DIGs are retired, even as he maintained that the emergence of the incumbent top cop was ill conceived.

He maintained that Idris’ rise from the position of Commissioner of Police just about a year ago to Acting IGP calls for serious concerns, wondering what was the rationale for picking a low ranking officer instead of the intelligent AIGs in the country.

He asked:  “How can you retire fresh and young brains for a personal motive? Nigeria is above personal motive. Where is the corruption PMB is fighting? I bet you the new IG will not work for the interest of Nigeria, but just for APC government.

“Police will be used to rig Edo, Ondo States elections and 2019 general elections. Nigerians should watch out and resist it. This government must be checkmated now before it plunges us into limbo.”