A group, Campaign for Equity, has faulted the membership of the Board of Trustees of the Nigeria Police Trust Fund, which was announced by President Muhammadu Buhari on May 6.
The group in a statement by its National Coordinator, Oliver Akosa, said the pattern of appointments by the President did not reflect federal character and the diversity of the country.
According to Akosa, the Chairman of the board, Suleiman Abbah, and Executive Secretary, Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto, were both from the North-West of the country.
Also, two other members of the eight-man team, Mansur Ahmed and Usman Bilkisu, are from Kano and Kebbi states respectively in the same region.
Akosa said the group was concerned that with this arrangement, the entire police architecture was dangerously tilted in favour of one zone of the country as the Minister of Police Affairs, Muhammad Maigari Dingyadi, was as well from the North-West.
The statement reads, “While we applaud the President, Muhammadu Buhari, for taking steps to ensure that the Nigeria Police Force is well funded, well equipped and highly professional in line with international best practices, we note with disappointment that the composition of the Board of Trustees of the Fund is sectional, parochial and lopsided and does not therefore meet the basic requirements of federal character as enshrined in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
“Suleiman Abbah, Chairman of the board, is from Jigawa State in North-West Nigeria. The Executive Secretary, Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto, hails from Sokoto State in the same North-West. It is clearly odd and obscene for a national agency which is supposed to reflect the country’s geopolitics, have its chairman and secretary coming from one zone of the country.
“As if this is not embarrassing enough, two other members of the eight-man arrangement come from the same North-West. Mansur Ahmed, the member representing Organised Labour and Usman Bilkisu, the member representing Ministry of Justice, are from Kano and Kebbi states respectively. To cap it all, the Minister of Police Affairs, Muhammad Maigari Dingyadi, is from Sokoto in the same North-West.
“From the foregoing, it can be safely concluded that the entire police leadership of the country is in the hands of the North-West. This arrangement falls short of both regional and federal balance.
“We believe that these salient facts may have escaped those who constituted the Board of Trustees of the PTF. Consequently, we call on President Muhammadu Buhari to reconstitute the Board of the PTF. In doing so, he should be conscious of regional or geopolitical balance.”