The Zamfara State-born police chief enlisted into the Nigeria Police Force in 1979 and today heads the Nigerian Police Force at the most critical time since the return to democracy in 1999. Many questioned the rationale behind the decision of President Jonathan to appoint this officer to the highest position given his antecedents as a top cop.
The Justice Niki Tobi panel constituted in September 2001 by former Governor Joshua Dariye on the Jos crisis had recommended the retirement of MD Abubakar from the Police force.
In a White Paper released in Jos, the panel suggested that Abubakar should be dismissed if he refuses to retire.
The panel said: "Religious fanatics should not be posted to head state police commands. The commission recommends that for his ignoble role during the September 2001 crisis which resulted in the loss of lives, the former Commissioner of Police, Plateau State Command, Alhaji M.D. Abubakar, be advised to retire from the Nigeria Police Force and in the event of his refusal to do so, he should be dismissed from the service."
Abubakar from Zamfara State who was indicted twice between 2004 and 2006 by a Jos crises Panel, is alleged to have sponsored some Islamist Militant Group when he was Commissioner of Police in Bauchi and Plateau States.
Given the recommendations of the Justice Niki Tobi panel, one wonders if President Jonathan spent time to study the recommendations of this judicial panel before appointing Abubakar as the nation’s top cop. Upon Abubakar’s appointment, he assured the nation that he would confront the Boko Haram head on and end the menace. It did appear things were about to turn around until the unfortunate an untimely death of the DIG Operations, DIG John Haruna in a helicopter crash. As usual no one asked questions but was it really an accident or murder? Was it an inside job?
The IGP has become enormously wealthy since his appointment but no one knows or understands why law enforcement activity has not helped to rein in or curtail Boko Haram. At this time the US is sending a minimal number of personnel and it is expected our local agencies will give them the fullest cooperation. Our IGP has a well-oiled PR machinery charged with managing his public image while campaigning for tenure elongation and this guy uses monetary bounties for information leading to the arrest of Abubakar Shekau as a smokescreen to hide his insincerity in the fight against terror.
Here are questions for President Jonathan to consider:
1. Your Excellency, can you take time to read the Justice Tobi report about IGP Mohammed Abubakar?
2. Did you consider asking the SSS and other intelligence agencies to quietly monitor the activities of IGP M.D. Abubakar both within and outside Nigeria after his appointment?
3. Can you order an independent enquiry into the helicopter crash that claimed the life of DIG John Haruna? DIG Haruna was a talented cop who was determined to curb Boko Haram but was cut short prematurely.
~ Jason writes from Ojota ,Lagos
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters