Police IGP Ibrahim Idris disobeyed President Buhari when he spent a day in troubled Benue. He should be sacked in the morning.
“I’m not aware that the I-G did not spend 24 hours in the State as directed by me, I am getting to know in this meeting,” Buhari said as he showed up at a gathering of farmers, herdsmen, government officials, senators and members of the House of Representatives in Benue this week.
Idris was deployed to Benue at the height of the herdsmen killings. His brief was to keep the peace and rein in the killers.
However, Benue Governor Samuel Ortom accused the nation’s police chief of taking sides once he touched down in the State. Days later, Ortom and the police boss were exchanging bitter words on internet pages.
“IGP Idris has now positioned himself not only as the mouthpiece of those who are killing Benue people, but indeed as their shield. Little wonder herdsmen still proudly carry sophisticated weapons and willfully terrorise innocent people in the State without being arrested”, Ortom alleged in a statement.
“We wish to place it on record that contrary to the directive by President Muhammadu Buhari that the Inspector-General of Police should relocate to Benue to ensure that the killings stop, the IGP spent only one day in Benue and left for a destination where only he could tell. No one has seen him in Benue since that day”, Ortom added.
There are reports that Idris was at a birthday bash in neighbouring Nasarawa at a time he should have been keeping watch over Benue.
Presidential spokesperson, Femi Adesina, did try to downplay what was a clear case of insubordination from the nation’s police chief.
“It’s in the public domain that he (IGP) went from Benue to Nasarawa but nobody knew that he did not spend a night in Benue”, Adesina said.
“I’m aware of it but I did not know the length of time he stayed in Benue before moving to Nasarawa.
"There were in the realm of allegations until the key stakeholders mentioned it yesterday. There were just allegations as far as I’m concerned.
“Even now, there are still in the realm of allegations until we hear from the IGP", he added.
On Tuesday, March 13, 2018, Buhari summoned his police chief to explain why he disobeyed his orders.
“President Buhari today summoned the Inspector-General of Police to explain his flouting of the presidential order to remain in Benue State. The President has also asked for a comprehensive report on Police Operations in the affected States after which further decisions will be made”, a statement from the presidency read tersely.
This is hoping that during his meeting with Buhari, IGP Idris is told in clear, unmistakable terms that his services are no longer required. We expect the presidency to begin shopping for a replacement for the recalcitrant police boss before the meeting.
The position of IGP is a sensitive and serious one. Idris hasn’t really been stellar on the job since he succeeded Solomon Arase in June of 2016. His reign has been a controversial and scandal strewn one. At one point, Idris was accused of engaging in extra-marital affairs with female officers as a pre-condition for handing them promotions.
Idris has also been accused of corruption and soliciting bribes.
He was also embroiled in the controversy of attaching luxury cars to the First Lady--in violation of the nation's laws.
A police boss should be above board or at least pretend to be. Idris courts controversy at every turn.
Idris’ cup is now full and running over. Handling the killings in Benue with levity should be the last straw. Buhari should cut him loose by firing him.