Friday, 28 August 2015

Police Boss Cannot Remove EFCC Chair, Only Buhari Can – PSC

Following the recent probe by Nigerian Senate into the allegation that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) chairman, Ibrahim Lamorde, that he diverted funds and properties recovered
from looters, the Police Service Commission has declared that only President Muhammadu Buhari could remove Lamorde from office

Nigeria’s senate president, Bukola Saraki, has denied reports by Sahara Reporters that he hired George Uboh to smear the integrity of the EFCC.

According to the PSC, the Inspector-General of Police lacks the power to remove Lamorde from the EFCC chair, though he remains a policeman.

“It is not the Force headquarters that can redeploy him, his case has not even come before the Police Service Commission and it has not been discussed. Lamorde was appointed by the Presidency and unless he is going for a course, then the police can send him for a course after discussing with the Police Service Commission and the Presidency. His tenure is still running.

“Unless the President deems it fit to remove him from office as chairman of EFCC, we cannot interfere. Lamorde’s case has not come before the PSC and it has not been discussed,” the PSC’s commissioner in charge of the media, Comfort Obi was quoted in Punch.

According to recent reports, the IG, Solomon Arase, has commenced moves to withdraw Lamorde and other policemen that had stayed for more than five years with the EFCC.

Lamorde has been with the anti-graft agency since 2003 and has served in different capacities, including two times as acting chairman, before he finally assumed the EFCC chair in 2012.

The Senate probe commenced on Wednesday with Lamorde’s accuser, Dr. George Uboh, alleging that the EFCC boss connived with other officers of the commission to steal from money recovered from a former IG, Tafa Balogun, and a former Governor of Bayelsa State, Diepreye Alamieyeseigha.

Ms Obi also denied receiving any letter of redeployment from the Force headquarters in respect of the EFCC chairman.

“I think the first tenure is four or five years now, I can’t remember, after which it now depends on the President to re-appoint him or not to re-appoint him. If he did not re-appoint him, then the police would redeploy him.

“If he were to be redeployed, the IG would send a recommendation to the PSC and as I speak to you, we don’t have such a recommendation.

“If the Presidency feels he has served his full tenure, a new person would be appointed. Of course, the IG will redeploy him and send his name to the PSC for consideration, for clearance and confirmation. It is the IG’s job to send his name to us and because it is not on the table of the PSC, I cannot comment on that.”

“If his tenure had expired, it is not the IG that appointed him, his appointment came from the Presidency; but of course, he is a policeman first and foremost, it is the PSC that promoted him to the commissioner rank. If the Presidency won’t re-appoint him, the Presidency will tell the IG, ‘this is your officer, his tenure has expired, he is not likely to be re-appointed,’ in which case, as soon as the presidency removes him as chairman of the commission, he will report to the Force headquarters, that is back to base. It will now be the job of the Force headquarters to redeploy him to somewhere else and inform the PSC, it is the job of the commission to actually deploy policemen. That is how it works.”

Meanwhile,  Hon. Kayode Oladele, representing Imeko Afon/Egbado North federal constituency of Ogun State on Thursday said that Nuhu Ribadu should have been summoned to the senate instead of Mr Ibrahim Lamorde, the Chairman, EFCC.