Why Buhari sacked Adamu as IG despite tenure extension

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President Muhammadu Buhari has sacked Mohammed Adamu as the Inspector-General of Police barely 28 days to the end of his tenure which was extended by three months in February 2021.

The ex-IG was due to retire on February 1, but President Muhammadu Buhari extend his tenure by three months – to end on May 1.

Adamu was hit with the news of his sack on landing in Abuja from Imo, where he had gone to assess the level of damage caused by the Monday’s attack by armed men loyal to the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB).

According to credible sources, the federal government was toying with the idea of letting the ex-IGP go, to save itself from embarrassment over an impending court judgment when two other things happened.

A suit challenging Adamu’s continued stay in office filed by a lawyer, Maxwell Okpara, before a Federal High court in Abuja was due for judgment next week.

Sources said there were feelers that the judgment, scheduled for April 16, is likely going to be against the government.

“There was the story in Daily Trust on Saturday which was very embarrassing to the government and exposed how poor financial management and administrative lapses are affecting the activities of the police, nationwide,” the source explained.

Daily Trust had painted a vivid picture of the poor state of the police with Commissioners of Police (CPs) and Divisional Police Officers (DPOs) left to their own devices.

Police officers on special duties, our reporters discovered, are not being paid their allowances just as the running cost for operations was not forthcoming.

A source at the police affairs ministry said the story generated ripples as the presidency expressed displeasure to both the police management and the ministry.

But blames were heaped on the doorsteps of the former IGP, it was learnt.

While the dust raised by the story was yet to settle, a source said the attack on police command headquarters in Owerri, Imo State, in the early hours of Monday, worsened the situation for the former IGP.

The police has the constitutional responsibility of internal security and enforcement of law and order in the country.

Read Also: Imo Jailbreak: Osinbajo, Uzodinma spits fire as gunmen attack another Police facility

With the latest developments, those working to have Adamu replaced intensified their lobby, pointing to the ex-IGP’s failings.

Dingyadi, who was said to have since penciled down Baba for appointment as the IG got the green light Tuesday afternoon from London, where the president is on a medical vacation, to proceed with the announcement.

Announcing the sack at the State House Abuja, the Minister of Police Affairs, Mohammed Maigari Dingyadi said Adamu’s retirement was “with immediate effect.”

He said President Buhari thanked the outgoing IGP, Mohammed Adamu, for his professionalism and dedication to duty during the period of his tenure and wished him all the best in his future endeavours.

“After a thorough check of a shortlist of suitably qualified police officers from the rank of DIGs and AIGs, who are eligible police officers, eligible for appointment as IGP, in line with Section 7, subsection 2 of the Nigeria Police Act (2020), and having regards to seniority, professionalism, record of service and competence, Mr President has approved the appointment of an acting IGP, in the person of Usman Alkali Baba, PSE, FDC, with immediate effect.”

Asked to explain the reason why the president did not allow the outgoing IGP to last the three months of extension, the minister said: “Mr President is aware of this and you cannot take away that responsibility from him; he’s the one who is in charge of appointing or extending tenures.

“He has now decided to appoint a new person. So, please allow him that responsibility and we cannot do anything about it. Thank you.”