The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has submitted an interim report into the unlawful invasion of the national assembly by officials of the Department of State Services (DSS). The report was forwarded to the acting president, Yemi Osinbajo, on Wednesday, just 24 hours after the incident.
According to Idris, the report was in response to a petition letter sent to the police a day earlier from Osinbajo’s office asking that the sacked Director General of the DSS, Lawal Daura, be investigated.
First impressions of the report
Even by the extremely low standards of the Ibrahim Idris’ led Nigeria Police Force, the five page report was shoddy, mediocre, and littered with typographical errors. None of the ten findings in the report revealed anything new.
Consider some of the findings:
- “It was established that some of them [DSS operatives] were wearing hoods and masks to disguise their identities.”
- “The Department of State Security Service personnel acted like Mercenaries, hired to carry out executions.”
- “…Daura acted unilaterally without informing the Presidency.”
The main conclusion of the Idris report read thus: “It is crystal clear that the principal suspect Lawal Musa Daura may be acting the script of some highly placed politicians to achieve selfish political goals, hence his unilateral and unlawful decision to invade the National Assembly complex.”
Even though, that conclusion is the widely accepted position by Nigerians, there is disagreement on who these “highly placed politicians” are. Some critics of the administration believe that the culprits are agents within the federal government (maybe even from within the presidency). Senate President Bukola Saraki described them at his Wednesday’s press conference as “government within government.” However, some APC supporters claim that the culprit is the senate president himself, accusing him of being the mastermind of the NASS siege.
Saraki’s team spins it
In a bid to get ahead of the news and spin it to their favor, the media team of the senate president quickly released a statement last night entitled: “IG report confirms that APC politicians ordered senate siege.”
That was a lie. No where in the entire report did the IG mention the party affiliation of the “highly placed politicians” supposedly behind the invasion. The statement from Saraki’s team went further to claim falsely that “the report confirms that the former DG did not act on his own stead but was working with APC senators who were having another meeting at President Buhari’s private residence during the siege on the national assembly where it is believed that they were planning the next steps on their grand plan to impeach Senator Bukola Saraki as president of the senate.”
That was fiction. The report confirmed no such thing.
Saraki’s team makes about-turn
By evening, Saraki’s team was singing a different tune. A new statement signed by the spokesmen of the senate president, Saraki, and deputy senate president, Ike Ekweremadu, “raised the alarm that the Federal Government has commenced the execution of a plot to implicate them and their colleagues in the PDP for the last Tuesday invasion of the premises of the National Assembly by men of the DSS.”
The statement alleged that the presidency today constituted a closet panel to review the IG’s report and submit a final recommendation. “The presidency has set up a closet panel which would work to a predetermined conclusion in which they will now claim that the senate preseident and the deputy senate president worked in collusion with ex-DG of DSS, Lawal Daura, to stage the invasion,” the statement said.
The latest statement clearly makes a lie of Saraki’s team’s former claim that the report revealed APC politicians as being behind the invasion.
Saraki and Ekweremadu called on the presidency to set up an independent judicial commission of inquiry. “We reject any manipulated and fabricated investigation,” the statement said.
One last thing that may benefit Saraki
The good news for the senate president and his deputy is that a portion of the IG report would make it extremely difficult for anyone to accuse them of being behind the DSS invasion.
According to the report, “Following the interrogation by our intelligence operatives, the following FACTS emerged:
“…the suspect, Daura… conspired with his officers and men… preventing and forcing the peaceful members and staff of the National Assembly from gaining access to the complex without any element of crime committed or AN INVITATION BY THE LEADERSHIP OF THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY.“
So the police admits as fact that the leadership of the national assembly, which definitely includes Saraki and Ekweremadu, did not invite the DSS. If that is the case, then the two men should have no cause to fear.
But this is Nigeria!