Recruitment Saga: Police Service Commission workers commence strike Monday

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The joint union congress of the Police Service Commission (PSC) has notified the management of the commission of its impending strike. Chairman of the union, Adoyi Adoyi, said the strike will take effect from 29 August until further notice, the Punch newspaper reports. The commission’s workers, its chairman, Musiliu Smith, and the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba, have had squabbles in the past few months over which body should be responsible for recruitment, promotion, and appointment of constables and officers. The disagreement started when the recruitment of 10,000 Constables into the Nigeria Police pitted the PSC against the office of a former Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, in 2019. The commission, which is saddled with the responsibility of recruiting constables and taking disciplinary action against erring police officers, felt the IGP was trying to usurp its powers. As a result, a suit was initiated in court to halt the recruitment at the time.

Although the commission’s case was dismissed at the Federal High Court in Abuja, the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal, on 30 September, 2020, affirmed the constitutional powers of the PSC to appoint persons into the Nigeria Police Force.

Usurped powers

Speaking on the matter, Mr Adoyi noted that the IGP and other police chiefs in connivance with the chairman of the PSC, have usurped the constitutional duty of the PSC. He accused the IGP of illegally carrying out the functions of the PSC in flagrant disregard of the Nigerian constitution, the verdict of the Appeal Court, and the authorities of the commission.

“We’re embarking on an indefinite strike from Monday, August 29, to show how discontent with the way the PSC is being run by the chairman of the commission, and the flagrant disregard for the constitution, the court of law, and the PSC by the IGP, Usman Baba.

“The duties of the PSC are spelt out in the constitution, but the IGP has disregarded all of that, and has taken over the duties of the commission. He appoints and promotes at will as opposed to what is stated in the constitution.

“According to the constitution, the appointment, promotion, and recruitment of police officers and constables are the prerogative of the PSC, not the IGP,” he said.

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