….Recommends 2- year jail term for impersonators
The Senate has recommended five-year statutory tenure for any Police officer appointed as the Inspector General of Police ( IGP).
Appointment of such an officer as Inspector General of Police , would also be subjected to confirmation of the Upper Legislative Chamber as it is for all service chiefs, Chief Justice of Nigeria ( CJN),/Ministers, Ambassadors , Heads of Statutory Commissions and Agencies .
Provisions for these and others , are contained in the Police Reform Bill passed by the upper legislative chamber on Wednesday in plenary.
Passage of the bill by the Senate was sequel to a report presented to that effect by the Chairman , Senate Committee on Police Affairs , Senator Tijjani Kaura ( APC Zamfara North).
Under clause 7 of the bill which makes provisions and procedures for appointment and removal of Inspector General of Police ( IGP) , the bill in Clause 7(4b) states that the Nigeria Police Council shall nominate three applicants from among the pool of applicants for the position of IGP to the President for appointment.
Clause 7(4c) of the bill states that the President shall appoint the Inspector – General from recommended applicants subject to the confirmation of the Senate .
However for removal of any IGP, clause 7(7c ) of the bill empowers the Nigerian Police Council to make recommendation to that effect to the President of the country without Senate’s approval.
The Nigerian Police Council as stated in clause 6(2) of the bill as the highest policy making body in matters relating to the Police Force shall consist of the President as the Chairman , the Governor of each state of the federation , the Chairman of the Police Service Commission and the Inspector – General of Police .
The Senate in providing for five year single tenure for any IGP appointed , states that the tenure of such an office is statutory not withstanding his or her retirement age.
The Name Nigeria Police ( NPF) , is also retained in the bill since according to the committee , ‘ Force ‘ , is captured as part of the name of the crime fighting agency in the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria .
While two year jail term or N5million fine is is stipulated as punishment for any impersonator as Policeman or Police officer, internal disciplinary mechanism is recommended for any Police officer who brutalises or killed an innocent citizen .
Addressing the press after the passage of the bill, the Chairman of the Committee , Tijjani Kaura said the passed bill containing 131 clauses, will change the face of the Police in the Country from what it is presently to People Friendly one if eventually signed into law by the President.
“All the age long draconian laws in the Police Act of 1943 have been removed to make the Police people friendly , efficient and more effective in crime detection and security service delivery.
“Required constant trainings and welfare packages for men and officers of the Nigerian Police have been recommended for in the bill,” he said .
He stated that in the area of welfare packages for operatives of the Nigeria Police Force, provisions of the Police Trust Fund Bill passed last week by the Senate , will ensure their implementation.
” In the Police Trust Fund Bill, provisions like .05% from Nigeria’s gross income, .005% all profits made by companies in Nigeria etc , would go along way in helping government to fund the Police very adequately for improved security services to Nigerians,” he said.