April 21, 2015
J. Peter Pham on outgoing Nigerian President Jonathan Goodluck's decision to fire the head of the Nigerian police force:
Pham on the Removal of the Head of the Nigerian Police Force
“In his short tenure at the head of the Nigerian police force, Abba has been a lightning rod for criticism that he politicized his office,” said Peter Pham, director of the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center. “I am not so much surprised by the acting inspector general of police being sacked as his being sacked by the outgoing President Jonathan. It was only a matter of time before [he] was removed.”
Supporters of president-elect Muhammadu Buhari have called for Nigeria’s newly elected ruler to fire Abba as soon as he takes office, which made Jonathan’s decision to sack the police chief a surprise move. “If President Jonathan has removed a divisive figure ahead of the transition and spared his successor of the onus of beginning his term with what might be viewed as punitive measures, the incumbent head of state should be applauded for statesmanlike behavior and helping make the handover process that much smoother,” Pham wrote in an email Tuesday.