Mohammed Adamu Accomplishments As IGP
By Alwalled Khabir Yousuff
Mohammed Abubakar Adamu the currently the 20th Inspector General of Police of Nigeria was appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari on 15 January 2019 replacing Ibrahim Kpotun Idris (rtd).
Before his appointment as Inspector General of Police, he was an Assistant Inspector-General of Police in Benin City, Edo State and was responsible for the overall management and operations of the NPF Zone 5, comprising Bayelsa, Delta and Edo State police commands.
He was born on 17 September 1961 and enlisted into the Nigerian Police Force in 1986, after graduating from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria with a Bachelor’s Degree (Hons) in Geography. He also holds a Master’s Degree in International Criminal Justice System from the University of Portsmouth, England.
Between 1983 and 1984, Adamu had his National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Wamba, Nasarawa State and taught Geography at Government Teachers College, Wamba, Plateau State, during the one-year service, then in 1984 — 1986, he was appointed as Geography tutor and later promoted to Vice Principal at Government Day Secondary School, Gunduma, Keffi, Plateau State, but presently in Nasarawa State.
Barely a week after he took over, He disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) established by the previous Inspector General of Police. On 28 January 2019, Adamu acting as the new Inspector General Of Police submitted six names of the new Deputy Inspectors of Police to the Police Service Commission for general approval. His full appointment as the 20th indigenous Inspector General of Police was confirmed by President Muhammadu Buhari on 23 May 2019.
IGP M.A. Adamu vast policing experience within Nigeria and his kitty robust international law enforcement experience garnered whilst he was on secondment to the International Criminal Police (INTERPOL) Secretariat, Lyon France between 1997 and 2002 cannot be overlooked. Whilst at the INTERPOL, he served as a specialized officer on Economic and Financial Crimes, a position he held creditably well, leading to his numerous promotions and commendations, culminating in his appointment as a full-fledged Director in-charge of the African Sub-Directorate at the same secretariat.
Today, he holds the record as the first-ever African to be made a Director in the over 82 years history of the INTERPOL. IGP Adamu has led several criminal investigations for Nigeria in the UK, USA, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Taiwan, etc. To make him perfectly global, IGP Adamu, in addition to speaking Hausa and other Nigerian languages, speaks English and French languages fluently.
It is a well-known fact that no Police Force can function optimally without modern tools for crime prevention and detection especially state-of-the-art communication and database management. This has made IGP Adamu champion the cause of providing for the Nigeria Police Force a modern Joint Command and Control Centre (JCC), a centre that enables the Force to get live feeds from special surveillance vehicles strategically positioned at scenes of incidents anywhere in the country.
In addition to this, all security agencies in the country have representation at the JCC and work in harmony to ensure a crime-free country. Also, the first of its kind Nigeria Police Force Crime and Incident Database was also established within one year of the IGP in office. Now, not only will criminals be profiled and run through the database during subsequent arrests, employers can do thorough background checks of would-be employees. Furthermore, IGP Adamu purchased for the Force 217 tactical vehicles with advanced capabilities for surveillance, crime-fighting and detection, and crowd management. The new patrol vehicles can be described as smart police vehicles with on-the-move CCTV cameras. All these have further enhanced the capacity of the Force, thereby boosting the morale of the workforce.
On April 5, 2019, shortly after assuming office, IGP Muhammed Adamu launched a security exercise codenamed Operation Puff Adder– a special proactive and intelligence-driven Police operation designed at reclaiming the landscape from criminals through the massive deployment of well-trained, well-equipped, and well-motivated personnel and operational assets especially in the Kaduna-Abuja Expressway, Kogi, Katsina, Niger, and Zamfara States.
In the past one year, Operation Puff Adder, supported by other tactical Police departments such as the Intelligence Response Team (IRT), Special Tactical Squad (STS), Police Mobile Force (PMF), Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU), Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) carried out major police operations aimed at checkmating the activities of violent criminals. In the year under review, these concerted efforts have led to the arrest of over 1,527kidnappers,2,627armed robbers, 758 murder suspects, and 1,621 cultists; recovery of over 2,037 assorted firearms, the rescue of 945kidnap victims and recovery of 1,662 stolen vehicles. Now, there is evident respite on the Kaduna-Abuja Expressway while Zamfara State which had hitherto become a killing field has regained its lost glory as a peaceful state.
The crime rate across the country has been stabilized, while the IGP is currently working with other stakeholders and security agencies to further improve on security within Nigeria.
Under his tenure, IGP Adamu initiated and implemented an initiative aimed at mopping up illegal weapons across the country. This initiative paid off on May 25, 2019 with the arrest of a notorious transnational firearms/ammunition smuggling syndicate in Oyo State and the recovery of six thousand rounds of AK47 ammunition and several AK47 rifles. Several other arms smuggling syndicates were later smashed by the Police.
A total of 2,037 sophisticated firearms and two (2) rocket launchers were recovered from criminal elements; while 21,870rounds of live ammunition were also recovered across the country.
Perhaps, no one believes in Community Policing more than IGP Adamu. In his determination to fully engage the people in the successful policing of the country, the IGP worked with state governors and other stakeholders to organize “regional” security summits across the different geopolitical zones in the country and personally assessed security deployments in the areas visited. So far, the summit has been successfully held in four geopolitical zones while the South-East and North-Central will hold anytime soon. The IGP is equally implementing the Community Policing Concept which involves the engagement of 40,000 citizens in the interim as Community Policing Officers (CPOs) to perform low-risk and non-sensitive law enforcement functions. This is to be followed by a soon-to-be-rolled-out School Visitation Programme – an initiative aimed at meeting with primary and secondary school pupils/students and giving them early warnings on the dangers of crime. It is hoped that this strategy will cut the supply chain of would-be criminals, and help nurture our youths from the cradle.
Perhaps of greatest importance in the area of Community Policing is the nationwide launch of the Police Campaign against Cultism and other Vices (POCACOV), a programme, as the name implies, designed to engage students, youths, guardians, parents, religious leaders, community elders, etc in the joint fight to drive cultism and other vices to its barest minimum within the Nigerian society.
On assumption of office, the IGP made it clear in his inaugural speech that the welfare of his officers will be one of the major focuses of his administration. This he has done by recommending to the Police Service Commission nothing less than five thousand officers that are due for promotion to their next ranks. He has equally ensured that the heavy backlog of promotion arrears right from 2012 were cleared, while all outstanding burial expenses from 2013 and all insurance benefits to Next of Kin have been duly paid. In the same vein, the IGP has ensured the continuation of the yearly recruitment of ten thousand constables, an initiative that will improve the police-citizen ratio and alleviate the stress on the workforce.
Under IGP M.A. Adamu the Nigeria Police Force set a record of hosting for the first time the West Africa Police Chiefs Committee (WAPCCO) – a meeting where transnational security issues affecting the West Africa sub-region are discussed. The IGP equally hosted for the first time in the country the INTERPOL Week, a meeting of the International Criminal Police. It was at this all-important occasion, again for the first time in the history of the country, that the IGP gave the Nigerian Immigration Service full access codes to the Interpol 1-24/7 Global Communication System – a communication system that helps in the tracking of wanted persons across the globe. In both meetings, the IGP successfully galvanized regional and international support against organized and transnational crimes. These international collaborations have helped a great deal in combating arms trafficking, cross border car theft, cattle rustling, terror financing amongst others.
The present Police administration is determined to remain focused in the discharge of its statutory duties. This will be better achieved with the expected implementation of the Nigeria Police Trust Fund Act recently signed into law by President Buhari. It is anticipated that with the additional inflow of funds from the Trust Fund, the Police will be better equipped and trained to face the challenges of 21st century policing. Nigerians from all works of life are therefore called upon to continue to support the Nigeria Police Force in its sacred and important task of providing safety and security for all Nigerians.
Alwalled Khabir Yousuff is a Public Republic Expert