Disquiet trails IGP’s bid to sell police facility in Lagos few weeks to retirement

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Police

A major crisis is brew­ing at the Nigeria Police Force (NPF) over the decision by the retiring Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mo­hammed Adamu, to sell off the multi-billion naira Police Officers Mess located at On­ikan, Lagos State few weeks to his retirement.

According to investigation, the Lagos Officers Mess, On­ikan, contains about 40 chalets, two big halls, Squash Court, Lawn Tennis Court renovat­ed by the Economic and Fi­nancial Crimes Commission (EFCC) with about 40 rooms’ apartment.

As a prelude, it was learnt that mostly the maintenance civilian staff and police per­sonnel in the inspectorate ranks as well as other ranks and file have been forced out of Lagos with indiscriminate transfer to the Northern parts of the country.

Investigation further re­vealed that several attempts by successive IGPs to sell the multi-billion naira asset had been thwarted until the fresh attempt was being plotted by the outgoing IGP.

It was gathered that already, a private developer had started moving equipment and mate­rials to the site for renovation and reconstruction work as the civilian staff and senior police officers in the premis­es had been hurriedly chased out by the developer without alternative accommodation in place.

Our source stated that the matter had also caused cri­sis between the outgoing IGP and the members of the Police Management Team who re­portedly raised concerns over the sale without following due process.

Findings further revealed that some concerned senior officers in the force were not taking the matter lightly and would want the Presidency and the Police Service Com­mission (PSC) to intervene on the matter by prevailing on the outgoing IGP to put the act on hold in the interest of peace in the force.

According to one of such concerned officers, “This is a serious matter that the Presi­dency and the Police Service Commission have to inter­vene. Why now? The IGP’ is going in a few weeks’ time.

“Several attempts made in the past under previous IGPs failed woefully and so also the fresh plot will not succeed. This illegal act is not limited to the Officers Mess at Onikan, it applies to other police choice landed properties in such ar­eas as Ikeja, Falomo, Surulere, Apapa amongst others.

“We will go to any lawful length to stop the illegal act. Why the sale in the first in­stance? This cannot and will never happen in the military, it is only in the Nigeria Police Force.”

According to the source, fresh information at their disposal revealed that the “oc­cupants of the edifice had just been made to contribute vari­ous amounts of money for the renovation of the Mess before the developer came up sud­denly even without the knowl­edge of the Force Commission­er of Works who incidentally occupies an apartment at the building.

“Findings revealed that the deal is being done secretly but we are appealing to the pro­spective buyer to keep off as it will not stand the test of the time after the exit of the out­going IGP, because we are not in a banana republic where anything goes.”

Neither the Force Public Relations, (FPRO), Frank Mba, a Commissioner of Police, nor his Deputy, CSP Aremu Adeniran were avail­able for comments as their phones were unreachable as at press time.

However, a top police officer told Sunday Independent that the plot was real and called on well-meaning Nigerians, in­cluding the current Chairman of the PSC, Alhaji Musiliu Smith, who was also a former IGP, the Oba of Lagos, Oba Riliwanu Akinolu, a retired Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG), as well as the Presidency to wade into the matter urgently.

Credit: Sunday Independent

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