President Muhammadu Buhari and the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, have declared support for the argument that the law permits the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, to remain in office till 2023 or 2024.
They contended that the President is allowed by law to extend the IGP’s tenure as he wishes.
PREMIUM TIMES reported that Mr Adamu had canvassed the argument to counter a suit filed at the Federal High Court in Abuja to challenge the extension of his tenure by three months as from February 1. 13249333_linksolid1_png76229ec1bdd0fb58c
President Buhari and the AGF’s position on the suit, adopting in full Mr Adamu’s earlier argument on the crucial issue of how long an IGP can remain in office, is contained in their joint reply filed Monday.
‘Why Adamu can remain IGP till 2023 or 2024’
Mr Adamu had, through his lead counsel, Alex Izinyon, a senior lawyer, argued essentially in his response filed on March 8, that his tenure never lapsed on February 1 as argued by the plaintiff.
Arguing on the issue of whether Mr Adamu, who was appointed the IGP on January 15, 2019, is prevented from staying in office beyond February 1, 2021, Mr Izinyon contended that the tenure of the IGP is not governed by the general provisions applicable to the rest of the police force.
The senior lawyer said by virtue of the relevant laws, the office of the IGP is “quasi-political” and “is conferred with a special status” and “distinct from other officers of the Nigeria Police Force.”
He said the provision of “section 18(cool of the Nigeria Police Act, 2020 to the effect that ‘Every police officer shall, on recruitment or appointment, serve in the Nigeria Police Force for a period of 35 years or until he attains the age of 60 years, whichever is earlier,’ is with due respect, inapplicable to the office of the Inspector General of Police in the circumstance.”
He said the IGP upon appointment “is only accountable to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Nigeria Police Council and this fact we submit makes his office a quasi-political office with a tenure of four (4) years pursuant to Section 7(6) of the Nigeria Police Act, 2020.”