The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) in promoting the rule of law, commenced legal action against President Muhammadu Buhari, challenging the ignoring of the retirement of the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, and extending his tenure by three months.
NBA President, Olumide Akpata, in a statement on Thursday, disclosed that “the NBA-Public Interest Litigation Committee (NBA-PILC), on behalf of the NBA, commenced legal action at the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court in Suit No. FHC/L/CS/214/2021 (the “Suit”) against the President, Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Police Service Commission, and Mr Mohammed Abubakar Adamu.”
He narrated that “in the Suit, the NBA seeks judicial determination of the constitutionality of the President’s extension of Adamu’s tenure as the Inspector-General of Police for three months after Adamu had, on 1 February 2021, attained thirty-five years of service as a member of the Nigeria Police Force.”
Akpata explained that the NBA’s decision to take this extraordinary line of action is underpinned by an urgent need, and a sacred duty, to reassert the supremacy of the rule of law in the face of growing impunity and the seeming reluctance of Law Officers in Government to give proper counsel.
He noted that the NBA’s position in the Suit is that IG Adamu ceased to be a member of the Nigeria Police Force when he attained the milestone of thirty-five years of service. “Therefore, the President’s extension of Adamu’s tenure by three months, in the NBA’s respectful view, is unconstitutional, Akpata declared.
The NBA President argued that in the grand scheme of things, the NBA is wary that the more government officials casually violate the law, the harder it would become to expect citizens to be compliant. “Citizens take their cues from their leaders and public office holders who flout the laws of the country that they are meant to uphold will discover sooner or later that their examples will be followed by those that they purport to govern.”
The NBA President further stated: “The ubiquity of acts of impunity, especially, by those in high public offices, portends an existential threat to the survival of this country and her hard-won democracy. The NBA, now more than ever, is firmly committed to changing this narrative.”
He maintained that as the outcome of the Suit is awaited, the NBA will continue to condemn and confront lawlessness in any form and from all quarters.
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