By Umar Muhammad Puma
The All Progressives Congress (APC) has strongly condemned the Inspector-General of Police, Suleiman Abba for daring to say he does not recognize Rt. Hon. Aminu Tambuwal as the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and for weaving a web of lies to cover up the real reasons the police invaded the National Assembly.
In a statement issued in Osogbo yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said by refusing to recognize a Speaker who was duly elected by 360 members of the House of Representatives, and a Speaker who has neither been impeached by those who elected him nor removed by the Court, the police boss has thumbed his nose at the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
‘’As the Speaker, Rt. Hon. Tambuwal is the symbol of authority of the House and our country’s number four citizen, by saying he does not recognize him as the Speaker, the IG has also indicated he does not recognize the entire House of Representatives. For a man who was not elected by anybody to make this impertinent assertion about elected representatives of the people is tantamount to treason. Mr. Abba has shunned all pretenses to neutrality, professionalism and decency and he is no longer fit to occupy the important office of the IG,’’ it said.
APC wondered at what stage the IG realized the issue involving the Speaker was sub judice, especially after he constituted himself into a court of law, which is the only body that is constitutionally empowered to make any pronouncement on the fate of the Speaker, and unilaterally withdrew the Speaker’s security detail.
The party said Nigerians are very much aware that Mr. Abba, by himself, could not have acted the way and manner he has done, adding: ‘’But the truth is that he is dancing to a drum of perfidy being beaten by his masters at the Aso Rock Villa. In the process, he has acted in contravention of his oath of office’’.
It said even though Nigerians are aware that the IG acted at the behest of his masters in trying to unlawfully remove a duly-elected Speaker of the House of Representatives, he still went ahead to engage in cheap lies by saying he barred the Speaker and other members of the House from entering the National Assembly because Gov. Amaechi and the APC were planning to invade the Assembly as well as the Aso Rock and the Police Headquarters.
‘’Shortly after the incident, Police spokesman Emmanuel Ojukwu said the police acted the way it did because it got intelligence report that ‘’hoodlums and thugs’’ were coming to invade the House. Now, the police boss said it was because Gov. Amaechi and the APC were coming to invade the House. This is a most shameful lie from the highest police officer in the land, and it is a terrible dent on the image of the police under Mr. Abba.
‘’One wonders why the police was so concerned about the security of the National Assembly that it engaged in selective granting of passage to the principal officers of the Assembly. The Senate President was allowed to enter without qualms, just like the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives. But when the Speaker came, he was locked out. That speaks volumes about the intention of the police,’’ APC said.
The party commended the individuals and groups that have strongly condemned the police action, but reminded them that there is still much work to be done to prevent the President, acting with a spineless, highly-partisan and increasingly unprofessional police and other security agencies, from crashing the country’s hard-earned democracy on the altar of inordinate political ambition.
‘’Mr. Abba is presiding over perhaps the most-partisan police force ever in the history of our nation. He has thrown professionalism, neutrality and fairness to the wind and made the police a willing tool in the hands of a frenzied executive. He cannot be trusted to ensure a level playing field for all parties at the next general elections, hence he should be removed immediately,’’ APC said.