ALTHOUGH reactions to President Goodluck Jonathan’s appointment of Mohammed Dahiru Abubakar as Acting Inspector-General of Police (IGP) are mixed, the opposition to it is fierce. Only a section of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) hailed the decision. Political parties, Christian bodies and civil society groups, which commented on Abubakar’s choice yesterday, raised posers over his suitability for the office. Among the critics of the President’s action were leaders of the 19 Northern State chapters of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), the Lagos League of Political Parties (LLPP), and the Civil Liberties Organisation (CLO).
Even the Governor of Zamfara State Abdulaziz Yari (Abubakar’s home state) does not believe that the removal of Mr. Hafiz Ringim as IG from office by the President would lead to improvement in the security situation in the country. At the Presidential Lounge of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos yesterday, Yari said rather than sack them, security chiefs should be encouraged to do their jobs, especially on intelligence gathering.
In a statement issued in Kaduna yesterday, CAN said the “new IG’s appointment came to us as a big surprise because this is a man whose career is trailed by controversy based on religious fanaticism. For him to be appointed as the acting IG, we wonder whether President Jonathan meant well for the country?” The Publicity Secretary of Northern CAN, Mr. Sunday Oibe, who signed the statement, said, “to us, the appointment of Abubakar is an extension of terrorism in Nigeria. Christians in Northern Nigeria will not feel safe following his antecedents as the Commissioner of Police in Plateau State as documented by the Justice Niki Tobi Commission of Inquiry into the bloody killings during the 2001crisis in Jos.
“To us, it is a licence given to him by President Jonathan to unleash terror on Christians and we reject his appointment as acting IG. The profile of Abubakar is not befitting of an acting IG of Police. One begins to wonder why a man who was indicted for religious fanaticism by the Niki Tobi Commission, which equally recommended him for retirement or outright dismissal, could be allowed to remain in the Police.