By Ayo Kehinde
The Senate on Thursday debunked claims by the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Kpotum Idris for refusing to honour its invitation in person to explain what the Police are doing to address the spate of killings across the country.
In a statement by its spokesman, Sen. Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, the Senate said the crux of the matter that informed the invitation is the ceaseless spate of killings across the country and not matters concerning the arrest of Senator Melaye, which he said had been overtaken by events.
“We noted the response issued by one Jimoh Moshood on behalf of the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris following yesterday’s resolution of the legislative chamber on the continued refusal of the IGP to honour the invitation for him to come and explain what the police are doing to halt the spate of killings across the country.
“Let it be known that the IGP by trying to reduce the reason for his invitation by the Senate to the arrest of Sen. Dino Melaye is simply holding on to straw. The issue of Sen. Melaye’s arrest has been overtaken by events. The courts are already handling the related cases. Our main concern is the security crisis across the country where people are being killed in scores on daily basis. The primary responsibility of the Police is maintenance of law and order as well as protection of lives and property. If there is a breach along the line of this responsibility, we do not see why the IGP should feel he cannot be invited to offer explanation to the arm of government which is constitutionally empowered to ask questions and investigate the breach.
“No responsible body of representatives of the people will ignore sad reports given by members on the floor of the Senate. For instance, on April 24, 2 Catholic priests and and 17 members of their congregation were murdered as reported by Senator George Akume. Also, Senators Kabir Marafa and Tijani Kaura had earlier intimated the Senate of the killing of 35 people in Maradun LGA, over 100 people killed in Anka and 36 people killed in Birani Village in Zurmi LGA, all in Zamfara State. Even as at now, reports reaching us showed that recent killings have occurred in Kaduna, Taraba and Benue States. These were just few instances of daily occurrences of gruesome murder of our constituents as raised by Senators. The IGP definitely should not have any problem with an invitation for him to tell the Senate what he and his men are doing to stop the killings as well as their challenges and needs in doing this.
“Mr. Idris should not seek to confuse issues or play on the intelligence of members of the public with his diversionary statement or claims. The resolution of the Senate leading to his invitation is clear and we invite our people to check. It is for the purpose of having a transparent and open hearing that we fixed his appearance for Wednesday when our plenary sitting enjoys live coverage on national television.
“In one instance in the past, Mr. Idris had gone to court in order to evade honouring the invitation of the Senate and the court headed by Justice Abba Bello Mohammed of the FCT High Court on April 10, 2018, told him in clear terms that his suit lacked merit as Sections 88 and 89 of the Constitution empower the lawmakers to carry out investigations on issues of public interest.
“Any public officer who plans to place himself above an arm of government obviously is not fit to remain in office. Mr. Idris is only afraid of his shadows by alleging witch-hunt when he is called to account on the performance of the duties of his organisation”, Abdullahi stated.