15 Dec 2014

Force Headquarters asks Tambuwal to apply for Police protection

The Force Headquarters has yet to restore any security details to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Aminu Tambuwal, over one week after it said he would be given police protection.

Instead, it said on Sunday that Tambuwal should apply for police details if he needed any.

Shortly after he emerged as the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress for the 2015 elections in Sokoto State, the police said they would give Tambuwal and all other candidates protection.

However, the force headquarters clarified that it would do so not because it recognised Tambuwal as the Speaker but because of his emergence as a governorship candidate.

The Force Police Relations Officer, Mr. Emmanuel Ojukwu, had stated, “The police will do the needful in protecting Alhaji Tambuwal and all other contestants.”

But, over one week after it made the promise, the force headquarters made a U-turn on Sunday.

Ojukwu now said there was no automatic protection for any candidate, adding that anybody desirous of police protection should apply for it.

He noted that policemen had a lot of work to do and would not run after politicians asking whether they needed protection or not.
“It is the duty of the police to provide protection for all aspirants but they have to apply to be given police operatives.

“We have enough work on our hands and we cannot be running after candidates who need our protection.

“All candidates must apply for police protection,” Ojukwu said in Abuja.
But Tambuwal reacted that he would not join issues with the police over their latest stance.
He recalled that the same police had long failed to obey a court order, saying that the “status quo should be maintained” over the withdrawal of his security details.

“We don’t want to join issues with the police. There is a court order saying the status quo should be maintained, but they chose to violate the order,” Tambuwal’s Special Adviser on Media, Mr. Imam Imam, said on Sunday.
The police had withdrawn Tambuwal’s security details soon after he defected from the Peoples Democratic Party to the APC on October 28.

The police claimed that they acted in line with Section 68 (g)(1) of the 1999 Constitution, a provision that allows defection only on grounds of a division in a political party.

The Speaker has since challenged the police action before an Abuja Federal High Court.


Credit: John Ameh/Adelani Adepegba/Punch

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