Northern Christians reject new IG, MD Abubakar
•Allege religious fanaticism, Jos crisis indictment
From NOAH EBIJE, Kaduna
Friday January 27, 2012
Twenty-four hours after appointing Muhammed Abubakar as the acting Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Christians in the 19 northern states and Abuja have rejected him.
In a statement signed by the Publicity Secretary of the Christian Association Nigeria (CAN), Sunday Oibe, it noted that all the Christians in the region were surprised at Abubakar’s appointment, citing alleged controversy surrounding his paramilitary career.
He was Assistant Inspector-General (AIG), Zone 12 before he was appointed on Wednesday by President Goodluck Jonathan to replace former IGP Hafiz Ringim, who had proceeded on retirement leave. The statement drew the attention of President Jonathan to the antecedents of the new acting IGP when he was the commissioner of police in Plateau State and his defence before the Justice Niki Tobi Commission of Inquiry into Jos crisis in 2001.
“The appointment of Mohammed D. Abubakar as the acting Inspector-General of Police came to us as a big surprise because this is a man whose career is trailed by controversy based on religious fanaticism. To us, the appointment of Abubakar is an extension of terrorism in Nigeria.
“Christians in northern Nigeria will not feel safe following his antecedents as the commissioner of police in Plateau State as documented by the Justice Niki Tobi Commission of Inquiry into the bloody killings in the crisis in Jos in 2001.
“To us, it is a licence given to him by the president to unleash terror on Christians and we reject his appointment as acting IG.
“The profile of Abubakar is not befitting of an acting IG of police. One begins to wonder why a man who was indicted for religious fanaticism by the Niki Tobi Commission, which equally recommended him for retirement and outright dismissal, could be allowed to remain in the police force.
“It appears that some unpatriotic characters, especially in the Nigeria police, are being allowed to have their ways in this country. We say this because there is similarity between Zakari Biu, a commissioner of police, who set free a suspected Boko Haram bomber and Abubakar, who supervised the killings and wanton destruction of lives and property in the 2001 crisis in Jos.
“We are calling on the Federal Government, whose duty is to protect lives and property, to look inward and appoint a liberal Nigerian as inspector-general of police and not a religious fanatic,” the statement said.