Recruitment of 10,000 constables by IGP voided by Appeal Court

By our reporter| The Court of Appeal in Abuja on Wednesday nullified the recruitment of 10,000 constables carried out last year by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu in 2019.

A three-man panel of the Court of Appeal led by Justice Olabisi Ige unanimously held that the IGP lacked the power to recruit constables for the police force as that
power exclusively belongs to the Police Service Commission.

The judgment nullified the earlier decision of Abuja Federal High Court which empowered the IGP to proceed with the recruitment of the officers in 2019.

The PSC, in a superiority battle with the IPG, had in September 2019, instituted the suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1124/2019, in its bid to gain the exclusive right to conduct the recruitment process which the NPF and the IGP, had as of that time, almost concluded.

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But in a judgment delivered on December 2, 2019, the Judge dismissed PSC’s case for lacking in merit.

But the PSC had through its lawyer, Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), appealed against the judgment at the Court of Appeal.

In its judgment on Wednesday, the Appeal Court upheld the PSC’s case by resolving all the issues raised in favour of the appellant.

The court agreed with Agabi, represented in court by Edidiong Usungurua, that the word “appointment” used in the Constitution with respect to the powers conferred on the Police Service Commission included “the power of recruitment and or enlistment of recruit constables”.

The court held that the police regulation and or provisions of the Police Act which purportedly vested the IGP the power of recruiting constables “is null and void being in conflict with the Constitutional powers vested in the Police Service Commission”.

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It, therefore, declared the recruitment carried out by the IGP as “null and void”.

The court further granted all the prayers sought by the PSC in its amended suit filed at the Federal High Court.

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