The Nigeria Police Force has insisted that the Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim Idris was invited to brief them on Senator Dino Melaye and not because of the security concerns in the country.
The Police backed up its claim in a statement in Abuja on Saturday by its Spokesman, ACP Jimoh Moshood where it attached two copies of the letter sent to the IG by the Senate.
The letters dated 25th April and 8th May signed by the Clerk of the Senate, Nelson Ayewoh was addressed to the IG.
The letters were titled; “Invitation to brief the Senate on the poor treatment of Senator Dino Melaye over case that is in a competent law court, and other killings across Nigeria.”
The Police also said the heading of the letters suggests that the brief on the killing across the country was an afterthought adding that it was against standards to discuss security matters on national television.
The Police also faulted the Senate President’s office for releasing the list of those killed so far in 2018.
The Police said the list is capable of worsening the security situation in the Country.
On the invitation, the statememt reads: “The recent claim by the Senate that the reason for inviting the IGP is to brief them on the recent killings in some part of the Country is an afterthought which can be seen from the headings of their invitation letters.
“In any case, if the Senate is sincerely interested in knowing the strategies adopted by the Police in tackling the killings in the affected States, they would not have invited the IGP to speak on the strategies of the Force on National Television.
“The Senate’s action to cover the appearance of the IGP on National Television is against National Security, unconventional and it negates global security practice. There is nowhere in the world where security matters are discussed on National Television, even the Senate deliberation and decision on the appearance of the IGP were done in close session.
“One wonders why security strategies of the Force to tackle the killings in the affected States would be discussed on National Television.”
The statement further resds: “From the headings of the above quoted invitation letters, it is very clear that the IGP was invited on those occasions by the Senate purposely because of Senator Dino Melaye’s criminal indictment in respect of felonious and serious offenses of Criminal Conspiracy and Unlawful Possession of Prohibited Firearms 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, who are already standing trial in a court of competent jurisdiction.
“The pinch emphasis on security matters in the invitation letters was diversionary to attract undeserved public sympathy in the Senate’s desperate bid to trivialize and water down the crime and criminal liabilities for which Senator Dino Melaye is standing trial.
“However, due to the respect the IGP has for the Senate, that when on the 25th of April, 2018, the Senate invited the Inspector-General of Police to appear before it on the 26th of 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 while the Inspector-General of Police was on official assignment with the President of Federal Republic of Nigeria in Bauchi on same date, that 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 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, the Senate again refused to accord them audience insisting that the Inspector-General of Police must appear in person.
“It is pertinent to let the public be aware that the Inspector General of Police since assumption of duty in June, 2016 has appeared about ten times before the Senate on different issues of National Importance.”
On the list released by the Senate the recent killing, the Police stated: “The release of the purported list of killings in Nigeria in 2018 by the Office of the Senate President is shocking, unfortunate and capable of worsening the security situation in the Country.
“It is mischievous and heinous to play politics with people’s lives; even if it is a soul. The release is speculative and not supported by any fact. Office of the Senate President does not receive or process security report from State commands.
The Nigeria Police Force has severally reiterated that it holds the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in high esteem and regards, but will not be cowed from ensuring the supremacy of the laws of the land, preservation of law and order and above all the full enforcement of the rule of law throughout the Country.
“The Force will also continue to resist any intimidation from any quarter either constituent or otherwise which run contrary to the provisions of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended and other extant laws. By insisting that the Senate abides by the constitutions and provisions in the Police act and regulations, the IGP is not holding on to any straw as asserted by the Senate Spokesperson but to the rule of law to ensure that there is no sacred cow.”
On the security brief as demanded by the Senate, Moshood said: “The attention of the Nigeria Police Force has been drawn to media publication credited to one Sen. Sabi Aliyu Abdullahi, Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs that “IGP should stop holding on to the straw on why he refused to comply with the invitation of the Senate for him to come and explain what the Police are doing on the spate of killing across the country.
“The incidents of killings in some part of the country are being addressed by the Nigeria Police Force and other security and safety agencies in the Nation. While normalcy have been restored in most of the affected areas, hundreds of suspects directly responsible for these dastardly acts have been arrested and are being prosecuted in the affected States.”
To prove that the effort made by the Force is yielding result, the Police said over 5000 firearms have been recovered from wrong hands across the country.
“5000 prohibited firearms have been recovered from wrong hands across the Federation on the directives of the IG in the mop-up operations currently ongoing throughout the Country.
“These are part of the brief the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Department of Operations was delegated by the IGP to deliver on his behalf to the Senate, but he was not allowed.
“It is incumbent on the Force to educate Sen. Sabi Aliyu Abdullahi that IGP was represented at the Senate on 26th April, 2018 and 2nd May, 2018 as provided for and in accordance with the extant laws, which affirms that, the functions, duties and responsibilities of the Inspector General of Police 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 in accordance with 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.”
The Force said it would continue to uphold the rule of law in all its ramifications and also ensure that nobody under any guise, no matter how highly placed is allowed to pervert the course of Justice.
“The Force insists on due process of the law and once again implores the Senate not to whip-up sentiments or resort to self-help but to allow the rule of law and justice to prevail on the whole matter.”