The former Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Solomon Arase, has revealed that his predecessors Mohammed Abubakar and Suleiman Abba, took 22 vehicles from the force when leaving office.
Arase said this in reaction to the claim of Ibrahim Idris, the incumbent IGP, that he took 24 vehicles while retiring.
Idris had said Arase illegally took 24 vehicles away back in July, and he had written to him to return them to avoid being sanctioned.
Arase had denied doing this, and accused his successor of slandering him.
In a letter dated December 1, Arase told Idris to avoid any form of public ridicule on any past occupant of the office. He stated that during his tenure, he made sure the Force Order 295 was put in place to protect ex-IGPs from being ridiculed.
Arase said that instead of slandering Abba, who he succeeded, he went ahead to buy him a brand new bulletproof jeep for the sacked IG regardless of the fact that Abba’s administration left a debt of N28 billion for him to contend with.
He advised Idris to put the integrity and honour of the Nigeria Police Force first in any of his actions so as not to expose the force to public ridicule.
“I expect that former occupants of the office of the Inspector-General of Police should not be demeaned. This explains why Force Order 295 was emplaced by the force management under my leadership as acknowledged in your letter in reference.
In spite of the emplacement of this order and despite the fact that my two immediate predecessors left office with 13 and 9 vehicles respectively, I never pressurised either of them to return any of such vehicles neither did I engage in any act that was capable of bringing them to ridicule as being done to me of late by a force I dedicated my life to serving up to the highest level.
Rather, it is on record that I went the extra mile to source for funds and initiated actions towards purchasing a brand new bulletproof jeep for my immediate predecessor, even after his retirement from service. This was done notwithstanding the fact that I inherited and had to manage a huge debt profile of about N28bn, which limited the financial base of the force at the time,” Arase said.
Abubakar retired in 2014, Abba was sacked by former President Goodluck Jonathan in April 2015.