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UPDATE: Police Letter Demoting Lagos CP Is Not Authorised – Mike Okiro

The Chairman, Police Service Commission, Dr. Mike Okiro has dismissed a letter from the commission purportedly demoting the Lagos State Acting Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohimi, back to his rank of Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP).

He stated that the letter was not authorised and should be ignored.

What happened? How did the "unauthorised" letter come out of Police Service Commission?

The commission’s Permanent Secretary, Musa Istifanus, had written to the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, about the demotion of Imohimi to his former rank of DCP.

The letter had generated confusion within the leadership of the police, as well as stakeholders.

But Okiro, in a telephone interview with Punch on Thursday, explained that he had told the IG to ignore the letter, adding that he would discuss the matter with the Permanent Secretary, Istifanus.

He said, “The letter was not authorised by the commission; Istifanus did not write on my behalf. I read the letter too like everybody and I have told the IG to ignore it. The letter was not authorised at all. I will meet with Istifanus about it and find out how the letter came about.”

A commissioner in the PSC also disowned Istifanus over the letter, insisting that the commission did not discuss Imohimi’s demotion at its last meeting on September 27 and 28, 2017.

The official expressed shock over the letter, noting that the commission chairman would address the issue after his resumption from a casual leave.

The source said, “Imohimi’s designation is Acting CP, Lagos; nothing has changed. The chairman is not aware of the letter and commissioners are also not aware. The commission gave the IG anticipatory approval to make Edgal the Acting CP and this stands.

“I remember vividly what happened at the meeting; the issue was not discussed, so the content of the letter was not our decision.”

Reacting to the development, the Nigeria Police authority said Imohimi had no disciplinary matter that could lead to his reported demotion.

The Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, said Imohimi remained the Acting Lagos CP.

He said, “The PSC has the power to appoint, promote and discipline officers, but it does not have the power to demote. It can only demote an officer after the Force Disciplinary Committee has looked into what the officer has done and then recommend him for a disciplinary action, PSC can only authenticate what the police take to it.”

He added, “In this case, Acting CP Imohimi has not committed any disciplinary offence and the Force Disciplinary Committee has not recommended him for demotion.”