By Ojoru Oguche
More than 24hours after his appointment as Commissioner of Police in charge of Kogi state, CP Esa Sunday Ogbu is yet to assume duties at the Kogi Police command.
CP Ogbu, who was deployed to Kogi on Wednesday by the Inspector General of the Nigerian Police Force, Ibrahim Idris, following the sack of CP Ali Jangal, the erstwhile Kogi Police Commissioner, failed to appear at the headquarters of the state’s Police Command on Thursday for the traditional change of guards and handing over ceremony.
The sacked Kogi Police Commissioner, Ali Jangal, in company of the Assistant Inspector General of Zone 8 of the Nigerian Police Force, spent hours waiting for his successor to turn up before it became obvious that the handover ceremony would no longer hold as scheduled.
The two Police officers later reportedly drove out of the command with their aides, fueling speculations that the newly appointed Police Commissioner may have been warned against taking up the appointment by the state government.
Earlier on, the Director General (Protocol) to the Kogi state Governor, Abdulkareem Jamiu Asuku assured Kogites that the sacked Police Commissioner would go nowhere, indicating that efforts were already being made by the state government to reverse the sack.
The DG Protocol who disclosed this in an online chat platform (Kogi Decides) also defended Janga’s records insisting that the Cop knew nothing about the jailbreak in Lokoja which led to the disappearance of six suspects.
“Oga…CP is going no where. So no disgrace. The man is hard working and he knows nothing about this ugly incidence. So…save your saliva,” he wrote.
“At least I know the person of CP and I should be able to speak of him,” Asuku added.
Reports monitored around Lokoja confirmed that CP Ogbu entered the state Wednesday evening but his exact location could not be ascertained by Thursday morning.
Speaking on the developments at the Police command on Thursday, analysts who craved anonymity wondered why a newly appointed Police Commissioner will fail to assume duties as directed by the IGP, pointing accusing fingers at the state government and its officials who have publicly voiced their opposition to the redeployment.
Some wondered if the new CP has been afflicted by a strange illness upon entering Kogi to warrant his inexplicable absence at the handover ceremony. Others however hinted that CP Ogbu “may have become the latest victim of the high-wire politics in the state, which necessitated the deployment of five Police Commissioners to the state within a space of two years.”!
Efforts to get official reaction from the Police on the speculations were fruitless as calls to the Force PRO were not answered or returned.
It would be recalled that IGP Idris on Wednesday directed CP Esa Sunday Ogbu, Commissioner of Police, Federal Operations, Force Headquarters, to take over as the new Commissioner of Police, Kogi State Police Command.
The IGP also redeployed the Commander, Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, in the state, the Divisional Police Officer ‘A’ Division, Lokoja and other police officers implicated in the escape for negligence, dereliction of duty and gross misconduct.
The Police boss made this known in a statement issued by the Force Public Relations Officer, ACP Jimoh Moshood.
The Police Spokesman revealed that the policemen are all facing serious disciplinary action over the escape of the suspects.
The statement reads: “The Inspector General of Police, IGP Ibrahim K. Idris, NPM, mni, dissatisfied with the circumstances surrounding the escape of six (6) suspects including two (2) Principal Suspects (KABIRU SEIDU A.K.A OSAMA, NUHU SALISU A.K.A SMALL) who indicted Senator Dino Melaye and Mohammed Audu in a case of Conspiracy and Unlawful possession of Prohibited Firearm already filed at the Federal High Court, Lokoja which came up in court today, 28th March, 2018, has ordered the immediate removal of Commissioner of Police, Kogi State Command, CP Ali Janga”, the statement read.
“The Commander FSARS in the State, the Divisional Police Officer ‘A’ Division, Lokoja and other Police officers implicated in the escape for negligence, dereliction of duty and gross misconduct in the escape of the six (6) suspects have also been transferred out of the State and are facing serious disciplinary action. Thirteen (13) other Police officers are currently being detained and investigated for their roles in the escape.
“CP Esa Sunday Ogbu, Commissioner of Police, Federal Operations, Force Headquarters, Abuja has been directed by the IGP to immediately proceed and take over as the new Commissioner of Police, Kogi State Police Command.
“Furthermore, on the order of the IGP, the IGP’s Intelligence Response Team and Special Tactical Squad, Personnel of the Force Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department have already arrived in Kogi State to work with the Police personnel in the State for immediate re-arrest of the escaped suspects. They are to also carry out detail investigation into the escape and bring all those involved to justice.
“The Force wishes to implore the good people of Kogi State to remain calm and assist with useful information to the Joint Police Investigation Team. They can report any information they have on the escaped suspects to the nearest Police Station in the State or any other State in the Country”, it added.