By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
The Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) yesterday said that it is prepared to stage a nationwide protest on January 15 against the continued stay in office by Mr. Ibrahim Idris as the Inspector General of Police. Idris, as at January 3 this year, had served 35 years in office and has reached the statutory retirement age of 60 years.
CUPP, in a statement yesterday, pointed out the office of the IGP has constitutionally become vacant and therefore urged President Muhammadu Buhari to appoint a serving police officer into the vacant office of Inspector General of Police as required by the 1999 Constitution. The Coalition noted that the action of Idris in parading himself as Inspector General of Police beyond January 3 this year is “an act of impersonation and a threat to national security which should be stopped summarily”. The spokesperson of the CUPP, Mr Ikenga Imo Ugo Chinyere, in a statement yesterday , reminded President Buhari of the sacred provision of Section 215(1)a of the 1999 Constitution which clearly holds that the President can only appoint serving Police Officer as Inspector General of Police .
According to the coalition, “This means that with the reaching of the mandatory retirement age of 35 years of Active service on Jan 3rd 2019 and the Mandatory retirement age of 60years of age while in service by the IGP (which comes up on 15th Jan 2019) the IGP is constitutionally barred from been retained or reappointed as Police IGP as he is no longer a serving Police Officer and his continued stay in office is illegal and an act of impersonation as there is no legal or documentary contrary evidence to back up his stay as IGP.”We call on President Buhari to be courageous to announce the replacement and not bow to the pressure to cement illegality in the core of the nation’s security architecture due to his desperation to rig himself back to power knowing he has been rejected by the Nigerian people”.
the danger of creating a vacuum in such a reverred office as that of the IGP, the Coalition said “the uncertainty in the leadership of the Police in such auspicious moment
emboldens persons with sinister motives and demoralizes senior officers of the force due to this abrupt and unlawful halt to their career progression. It said, “The law is clear on who can be appointed as Inspector General of Police and who cannot be appointed as Inspector General of Police and Mr. Ibrahim Idris is now in the latter group.
“ It is flowing from this and to save our dear country from further drift from a government that lacks capacity to provide leadership to our country that the Secretariat of CUPP hereby directs all coalition members in the36 states to begin preparation for nationwide protests from 15th January if the retired IGP is seen dressed in Police Uniform around the Force Headquarters.
“The protests will be in front of the Police Command headquarters of every state and shall be continuous till the right thing is done.
“During the protests, there shall be a declaration that since Mr. Ibrahim Idris is no longer a police officer cannot be addressed as IGP and a call to him to stay clear of the Force Headquarters”, it said.