Friday, November 15, 2013

IGP Denies Ordering DPO To Disrupt G7 Govs’ Meeting

The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, on Thursday denied
giving instructions to the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Asokoro,
Abuja, to disrupt a meeting of G7 governors which was ongoing at the
Kano State governor's lodge a fortnight ago.
CSP Nnana Amah of the Asokoro police station had led scores of
policemen to barge in on governors, who are members of the New
Peoples' Democratic Party, saying he had 'orders from above' to
disband the meeting or arrest the participants if they refused to call
off their meeting.
Abubakar, who denied giving the order himself or by proxy, however,
added, when he appeared before the House of Representatives Committee
on Police Affairs, that every state commissioner is responsible for
happenings within his domain.
The IGP said, "I want to say, before I comment on that particular
incident: there is nowhere, there is no time an instruction was given
to any particular police officer, to disrupt a meeting of any
particular organisation that is lawful.
"Neither myself nor through any of my aides have I directed any police
officer to disrupt any meeting. "
"Remember as a police force, in every police force, there are certain
responsibilities, the commissioner of police of a state has
responsibilities of that particular state; so is the commissioner of
Mr. Abubakar informed the committee that the DPO, who allegedly
disrupted the meeting, could not have done so with any other intention
than to provide adequate security cover for the governors.
"Anything that happens in FCT, the commissioner will be asked to
explain why it happened, be it robbery, be it kidnapping, be it any
act of illegality, and the point in question, where this meeting took
place is a very key area for the police because most of these areas we
do know that there are liaison offices for state governors. We are
aware of the fact that they require high level of security to maintain
that place, and I believe, without any contradiction, the DPO was not
sent by anybody to do what he did. I believe the DPO was merely there
to provide safety and security for whatever is taking place".
The IGP's position was corroborated by the police officer in charge of
the zone, Suleiman Abba, who told the Usman Kumo-led committee that in
the wake of the incident, he inquired from CSP Amah who insisted that
he was at the governors' lodge to carry out his duty.
He said the DPO told him that his main reason for going to the lodge
was to monitor security.
Members of the committee, however, faulted Abba's submission, saying
the governors have their own security personnel, who are always around
In his response, Abba said the ADCs may not be able to provide
adequate security for the environment as their primary duty is to
provide security for their principals.
The decision to summon the IGP was sequel to a motion sponsored by
Hon. Idris Mohammed Sani Kutigi (PDP, Niger) along with 60 others. The
lawmakers had noted "with concern the action of the Nigeria Police
Force, which violated the provision of the Constitution of Nigeria
1999 (as amended), specifically sections 40 and 308(1) (a) and (3)".
The committee is expected to submit its report to the House next week.

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