With the tenure of the current Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Mohammed A. Adamu statutorily expected to terminate on Monday, February 1, 2021 the Presidency is still tight-lipped on his successor resulting in disquiet in the top hierarchy of the Police Force.
The hands of the President however seem to be tied by the Police Act 2020.
Section 18 (8) of the Police Act, 2020 states 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”.
The incumbent IGP is a member of the ASP Cadet Course 14 which clocks 35 years in service on Monday, having joined the Police Force on February 1, 1986.
About 24 hours to the statutory retirement of the IGP, President Buhari is yet to announce a successor leading to speculations that the President may against the principles of the law extend his tenure.
It would be recalled that the recently retired armed forces service chiefs had their tenures elongated by the President.
Section 7 (6) of the Police Act, 2020 states that: “The person appointed to the office of the Inspector-General of Police shall hold office for four years”.
Mohammed A. Adamu was appointed as IGP by President Muhammadu Buhari on 15 January 2019 replacing Ibrahim Kpotun Idris (rtd) of Niger State.
Is this Section 7 (6) of the Police Act, 2020 a valid ground for his continued stay in office as IGP?
According to a Lagos based lawyer, Mr. Christian Akpotohwo, Section 7 (6) of the Police Act, 2020 cannot be a ground for IGP Adamu to remain in office since he has already clocked 35 years in service.
According to him, it will be illegal to continue to remain in office beyond February 1, 2021.
Also responding to questions from ionigeria.com, another lawyer, First Baba Isa stated that a law cannot be applied retroactively and that the Police Act 2020 cannot apply to the current Inspector-General since he was appointed prior to the enactment of the law.
He is therefore of the view that since Section 7 (6) of the Police Act, 2020 does not apply to him, he can therefore not continue in office beyond February 1, 2021
Section 7 subsection 2 of the Police Act clearly stipulates who can be appointed to the office of IGP: “The person to be appointed as Inspector General of Police shall be a Senior Police Officer not below the rank of Assistant Inspector General of Police with the requisite academic qualification of not less than a first degree or its equivalent in addition to professional or management experience.”
First Baba Isa is also of the view that the President has to read Section 7 (6) and Section 18 (8) of the Act together in choosing the next IGP. This implies that the person must have more than four years to serve before retirement.
The only person that meets this requirement is AIG Moses Ambakina Jitoboh who is due for retirement on the 10th of June 2029.
The current DIGs are: Due Retirement Date Service Duration Left
- Aminchi Samaila Baraya 01/02/2021 4 days
- Sanusi Nma Lemu 31/01/2023 less than 3 years.
- Usman Alkali Baba 01/03/2023 less than 3 years
- Nkpa N. Inakwu 01/02/2021 4 days
- Ibrahim Lamorde 01/02/2021 4 days
- David Oyebanji Folawiyo 21/11/2021 10 months
- Joseph O. Egbunike 04/06/2022 16 months
- Dan-Mallam Mohammed 18/12/2023 less than 3 years
- Tijani Baba 06/10/2021 8 months
- Mohammad Mustafa 01/02/2021 4 days
- Zanna Mohammed Ibrahim 26/11/2022 less than 2 years
- Moses Ambakina Jitoboh 10/06/ 2029 more than 8 years
- Jonah Jackson Mava 01/02/2021 4 days
- Olusholla Babajide David 01/02/2021 4 days
- Ahmed Iliyasu 27/05/2021 4 months
- Zaki M. Ahmed 15/02/2022 1 year two weeks
- Gwandu Haliru Abubakar 01/02/2022 1 year 4 days
- Zama Bala Senchi 05/10/2022 1 year 8 months
- Bello A. Sadiq 20/10/2022 1 year 8 months
- Austin Iwero Agbonlahor 30/08/2021 6 months 4 days
- Lawan Ado 27/03/2021 2 months
- Dandaura Mustapha 15/01/2023 less than 3 years
- Asuquo A.A. Amba 01/02/2021 4 days
- Nkereuwem A. Akpan 01/02/2021 4 days
- Olafimihan Adenira Adeoye 01/02/2021 4 days
- Agunbaide O. Lasore 01/02/2021 4 days
- Undie J. Adie 01/02/2021 4 days
- Olugbenga Adeyanju 01/02/2021 4 days
- Johnson Babatunde Kokumo 15/03/2023 less than 3 years
- Ajani Olasupo Babatunde 15/06/2021 5 months
- Awunah N. Donald 15/03/2023 less than 3 years
- Hafiz Mohammed Inuwa 21/03/2024 3 years 2 months
- Garba Baba Umar 15/05/2023 less than 3 years
- Isaac Olutayo Akinmoyede 15/03/2023 less than 3 years