The Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has said the Force does not owe any individual or group any apology as regards the discharge of its duties.
In a statement issued on his behalf of IGP by the Police Spokesman, Jimoh Moshood, in response to a resolution made by the Senate over his refusal to honour its invitation, Idris described the Senate’s actions as “unfortunate and mischievous” attempts to blackmail and witch-hunt him.
It would be recalled that the IGP has failed to honour the Senate’s invitation to appear before it in the last three occasions.
The IGP in his statement said: “The attention of the Nigeria Police Force has been drawn to the media reportage of the Senate’s resolution on Senate Order Paper of today, Wednesday, 9th May, 2018 after a closed door session that the “Senate declares the Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim k. Idris, NPM, mni, as enemy of democracy and unfit to hold any public office within and outside the country”.
“It is urgently imperative that the Nigeria Police Force respond to this resolution of the Senate which is a deliberate blackmail, witch-hunting, unfortunate and mischievous.
“In accordance with the extant laws in Nigeria, the functions, duties and responsibilities of the Inspector General of Police as stated in Section 215(1a) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended, and the Police Act and Regulations Section 309(1) can also be carried out as mentioned in Sections 7(1), 312(1), 313(2) of the Police Act and Regulations by a senior officer of the Force of the Rank of Deputy Inspector General of Police or an Assistant Inspector General of Police who if permitted by the Inspector General of Police to act on his behalf or represent him in an official capacity at any official function, event or programme within and outside Nigeria can do so in consonant with the provisions of the Police Act and Regulations.
“It is on the basis of the above that when on the 25th of April, 2018, the Senate invited the Inspector-General of Police to appear before it on the 26thof April 2018, in respect of the felonious offenses for which Sen. Dino Melaye was taken into Police custody, investigated and arraigned in a Court of Competent Jurisdiction in Lokoja, but because the Inspector-General of Police was on official assignment with the President of Federal Republic of Nigeria to Bauchi on same date, he delegated the Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Department of Operations, Assistant Inspector-Generals of Police and some Commissioners of Police conversant with the matter to brief the Senate.
“The delegated Officers went with a brief of the Inspector-General of Police on the matter to the Senate to enable the Senate appreciate the issues raised to guide their resolutions on the matter but the Senate refused to listen to the Officers delegated by the Inspector-General of Police in line with his powers recognized by both the Constitution and the Police Act and Regulations.
“The Senate again on the 26th of April 2018 wrote the Inspector-General of Police re-inviting him to appear before the Senate in person on the 2nd of May, 2018 but this time around the IGP was on official assignment to Birnin-Gwari Area of Kaduna State in company of the General Officer Commanding, One Division, Nigerian Army Kaduna, Major General Mohammed Mohammed to attend to some very serious security matters of National Importance, but he promptly delegated the Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Research and Planning, Assistant Inspectors General of Police and Commissioners of Police to represent him and brief the Senate on the same subject matter but the Senate again refused to accord them audience insisting that the Inspector-General of Police must appear in person.
“On the 8th of May, 2018, the Inspector General of Police sent a letter to the President of the Senate, Federal Republic of Nigeria signed by the Commissioner of Police, Legal and Prosecution Department, explaining why he would not be appearing before the Senate on the 9th of May, 2018 due to legal restraint as a result of pending cases before the courts filed: (i) by Senator Dino Melaye against the IGP and the Nigeria Police Force in the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja in suit No. CV/1610/18 slated for hearing on the 11th day of May 2018.
“(ii) by the Inspector General of Police against the Senate in the Federal High Court, Abuja in suit No. FHC/ABJ/CS/457/2018 adjourned to 31st May, 2018 for hearing.
“It is on record that consequent on the confession of criminal offences indicting Senator Dino Melaye by the principal suspect KABIRU SAIDU a.k.a OSAMA “31 YRS”, The Nigeria Police Force, sent a letter of investigation activities/invitation dated 2nd March, 2018 addressed to the Senate President, Federal Republic of Nigeria informing and requesting him to release Senator Dino Melaye to report to Commissioner of Police, Kogi State Command on the 7th of March, 2018 to answer to criminal offences of Conspiracy and Unlawful Possession of Prohibited Firearms levelled against him, this is to enable the Police Investigation Team carryout a discreet and thorough investigation into the case. But Senator Dino Melaye refused to honour the Police invitation.
“It is pertinent that the Nigeria Police Force informs the members of the General Public that the reasons for which the Senate has summoned the Inspector General of Police is official and not personal, and the 1999 constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended and the Police Act and Regulations allowed the IGP to delegate Deputy Inspector General of Police or Assistant Inspector General of Police to represent him.
“Consequently, the action of the Senate in its resolution against the IGP today is a deliberate blackmail, witch-hunting with mischievous motives to hand-twist the IGP to pervert the end of justice in a felonious and serious offenses of Criminal Conspiracy and Unlawful Possession of Prohibited Firearms for which Senator Dino Melaye who was indicted by two (2) Principal Suspects (Kabiru Seidu A.K.A OSAMA, Nuhu Salisu A.K.A SMALL) arrested for several cases of kidnappings and armed robberies in Kogi State are already standing trial in a court of competent jurisdiction.
“It is important to correct the impression created in the minds of the people from the Senate’s resolution that the IGP is not and will not be an enemy to democracy. It is also of significant note to state that IGP Ibrahim K. Idris, NPM, mni, has served meritoriously for above Ten (10) years in the United Nations PeaceKeeping Operations in several countries unblemished. The Nigeria Police Force is the first defender of Democracy and all democratic institutions in Nigeria and will continue to do so.
“It is factual and verifiable that Senator Dino Melaye was discharged and certified fit to stand trial by the National Hospital, Abuja before he was arraigned in Chief Magistrate Courts in Wuse, Abuja and Lokoja.
“The Inspector General of Police and the Nigeria Police Force will not be deterred by blackmail from any individual or group no matter how highly placed from the enforcement of Law and Order and ensuring that the Rule of Law prevails.
“No matter whose Ox is gored.
“The Nigeria Police Force, therefore, owes no apology to any individual or groups in its effort to ensure preservation of law and order, supremacy of the law of the land, and make sure that all Nigerians are subject to the same law, no matter what their position is in the society.
“The General Public is hereby implored to disregard and discountenance the resolution of the Senate on the IGP as a deliberate blackmail, witch-hunting and mischievously aimed at casting aspersions on the hard earned integrity of the Inspector General of Police and the Nigeria Police Force.
“The Nigeria Police Force as a law abiding organization will continue to hold the Senate of Federal Republic of Nigeria in high esteem but wishes to impress on the Senate not to harbour criminal elements among its fold or condone criminality.
“The Force will not be intimidated by any individual, groups or institution, constituent or otherwise to abdicate from its constitutional responsibilities of protection of lives and property and due enforcement of the rule of law, and law and order across the Country.”