Insecurity: Saraki ignores call to summon police IG to Senate

Nigerian senate chambers
Nigerian senate chambers

In apparent move to avoid extending another invitation to the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Tuesday ignored a prayer to summon the police boss to appear before the lawmakers.

Following a point of order by Ike Ekweremadu, the Deputy Senate President, Dino Melaye (Kogi-PDP) mentioned as his only prayer that the senate invite Mr Idris.

Mr Ekweremadu had urged the senate to look into the gruesome killing of a Red Cross staff, Hauwa Liman, by the Boko-haram terrorist group.

Ms Liman was kidnapped alongside others in March in Rann, Borno State, when the insurgents launched an attack on a camp for displaced persons.

Contributing, Mr Melaye berated the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration as being incompetent in providing security for the citizens.

He cited examples of police reckless killing of a corps member, Nkechi Igwetu, in July and the recent killing of another woman, Anita Akapson.

The lawmaker called for the summon of Mr Idris to explain the activities of his officers.

“This is beyond standing up and giving one minute silence,” said Mr Melaye.

“This is a time to invite the police. It’s either these policemen are on tramadol or other cheap drugs. That is the only explanation. There is a need to carry out drug audit on police in Nigeria.

“The senate should invite the Inspector-General of Police and ask why insecurity persists,” he said.

While citing the prayers for adoption, however, Mr Saraki left out that of Mr Melaye.

The senate adopted three prayers; to observe a two-minute silence for the deceased, condole with her family, and urge the federal government through its agencies to immediately ensure the release of Leah Sharibu and the last ICRC volunteer in Boko Haram captivity.

Mr Saraki asked that his colleagues second each of these prayers but failed to mete same treatment to the summon.

The omission may not be unconnected to series of face-off between the senate and Mr Idris before the last annual recess.

In less than a month, Mr Idris snubbed invitations by the senate thrice.

The police boss was first summoned on April 25 but he failed to appear.

On the day he was expected, the chairman of senate committee on police affairs, Abu Ibrahim, informed the lawmakers that the IGP had accompanied President Muhammadu Buhari to Bauchi.

The Senate re-summoned Mr Idris after it refused to allow the deputy Inspector-General of Operations to represent him.

The lawmakers summoned Mr Idris to appear on May 2 by 11 a.m. Again, he did not show up.

The chairman Senate Committee on Police Affairs, Abu Ibrahim, told his colleagues he had not been able to reach Mr Idris for a while.

He said he later found out the police chief had travelled to Kaduna instead of honouring the Senate’s invitation.

The Senate issued a third summons following a suggestion by the senate president.

Mr Idris was again asked to attend the senate plenary, May 9. But when it was time for the IGP to be ushered in to the senate chamber, the lawmakers realised Mr Idris was not available.


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