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2023 Elections: IGP Alkali not going on retirement, says minister

By Odita Sunday, Abuja
19 January 2023   |   10:18 am
The minister of Police Affairs Alhaji Maigari Dingyadi has said the Inspector General of Police Alkali Baba would remain in office and supervise the conduct of the 2023 election.

[FILES] Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba

*PSC staff kicks

The minister of Police Affairs Alhaji Maigari Dingyadi has said the Inspector General of Police Alkali Baba would remain in office and supervise the conduct of the 2023 election.

The minister’s statement was confirmed by the spokesman of the Ministry, Mr Bolaji Oladimeji.

Dingyadi had told state house correspondents, “I don’t know where you got your record, but by the provision of the Police Act 2020, the IGP is now supposed to have a tenure of the 4-year period and Mr President has given him a letter of appointment in that regard. So the issue of the IG going out during this election period does not arise.”

President Muhammadu Buhari appointed Baba as the acting Inspector General of Police on April 6, 2021.

The Police council confirmed him as the substantive Inspector General of Police in June 2021.

Alkali is billed to retire in March 2023 having served mandatory 35 years of service.

Some retired senior police officers had said that the statutory retirement of about 350 police officers in February and in March 2023, may affect the effective monitoring of the Presidential and governorship elections and other elections slated for February and March 11, 2023.

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had warned against the rising state of insecurity across the nation.

While some retired police officers believe that if the gale of retirement is not halted, there may be a manpower shortage which may adversely affect the effective monitoring of the general elections.

However, staff of the Police Service Commission (PSC) opined that extension of tenure of the IGP or any other officer would not be in the best interest of the police institution and upcoming officers.

Apart from the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Alkali Usman Baba who is to retire statutorily on March 15, 2023, about 16 Assistant Inspectors-Generals (AIGs), 12 Commissioners of Police (CPs) 9 DCPs, and about 30 ACPs, as well as over 35 CSPs, 47 SPs and 55 DSPs as well as about 70 ASPs are slated for retirement from February 1, to end of March 2023.

Already, two DIGs are going on statutory retirement at the end of January 2023 while two others would go with Alkali. Their letters of retirement are said to have been forwarded to the Police Service Commission (PSC) for processing.

Some retired senior police of­ficers said it is more reasonable to extend the tenure of the IGP, Usman Baba and those officers who are scheduled to retire for the purpose of the elections.

The Chairman of the Joint Service Union, PSC chapter, Mr Adoyi Adoyi has kicked against the extension.

According to him, “The position of the Union on the extension of the IGP’s service is that the responsibility for granting an extension to the IGP is the prerogative of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Given, however, the situation where there is a delicate situation or perhaps where the IGP himself has performed above board. But in this instance, and seeing the politics going on about the possible extension of the tenure of the IGP, it is an anomaly.

“It is an anomaly because the public office is not a political situation where people can start canvasing for tenure extension on the pages of Newspapers. Also, given the fact that the career progression of people who are coming behind will be affected by such extension. And as a staff in an organization where our responsibilities are about overseeing Police functions like recruitment, promotions and discipline and even operational work, an IGP who has trampled on the Constitution of the Federal Republic several times in his relation to the Commission.

“Remember that, as public servants, we are supposed to portray the government of the day in good light. So far, we do know that the IGP has not lived up to expectations in that regard as he flouts court orders, misinterprets court judgement and tramples on the constitution. I think that anybody who is encouraging the president to give an extension to the IGP is not doing the President any good. We also believe that the President, in deciding to give an extension be properly guided and consult with the Commission to make an informed decision. That is how we feel about this.”