Politics

Inside the career of Joseph Mbu, Nigeria’s most controversial police commissioner

Sahara Reporter - Nigeria's Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, Commissioner of Police, Mbu Joseph Mbu is becoming a recurring point of reference whenever mention is made of Police brutality. His forays as a 'Top Cop' in Rivers State seemingly stands out in his list of unenviable achievements, but a peek at his profile to date reveals equally shocking activities by the man who the foremost Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, described as, "tough enough to combat the Islamic terrorist sect, Boko Haram."
Before his deployment to Rivers state, he was the Police Boss in Oyo State, where he reportedly "embarrassed" the Nigeria Police Force so much, that he was removed from his post. As a Sun News Online report of February 11, 2013 puts it, 'The Inspector General of Police, Alhaji Muhammad Abubakar, has ordered the removal of Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Mr Joseph Mbu over... (the) occupation of the palace and ancestral home of Ashipa of Oyo." Mbu had 'defied' a standing court order concerning the Obaship tussle of Oyo State, between Alaafin of Oyo, and Isale Oyo. He took sides in the hotly contested matter, and raided the Palace of the Olu Ibadan with over 200-armed officers, and creating havoc, and making People wonder if he had 'no respect' for traditional institutions.His display of madness in Oyo State had not died down when he began unleashing 'terror' his critics say, as the new Commissioner of Police of the Rivers State Police Command. His policies were odd, even disturbing, acting as what many Port Harcourt residents at the time saw as, 'an opposing political party' all on his own. Mbu had finally completed the metamorphosis from Policeman, to Politician, it seemed to many who watched his career. His wanton acts, they said, range from disrupting legislative operations in the state, to dislodging peaceful protesters with bullets, albeit rubber ones.'The Riot Act Cop,' as he is described by his critics, including the Sunday Trust newspaper in an article of February 16, 2014, said, (that he) has now taken his trade to Abuja, were he's now making headlines as he has banned the #Bringbackourgirls rallies in the Nigerian capital. It is a controversial campaign that has taken-on an international complexion.

This move has, however, been 'upturned' by the Inspector General of Police, who has done all he can to suppress his disappointment with Mbu, SaharaReporters has learned. Mr. Mbu is a known acolyte of equally controversial Nigerian first lady, Patience Jonathan, this, critics say is responsible for Mbu's acts of impunity.

Before that, he had upon resumption of duty at the Federal Capital Territory, dismissed all Divisional Police Officers in the command, asking for direct reporting to himself at the command Headquarters. This is also considered a controversial move. His reputation as a 'Police Dictator,' say those familiar with his career, seems to know no bounds.

As if the negative rave reviews he's been getting were not enough, recently, it was noticed that FCT branded Police vehicles have adorned the Commissioner of Police residence in Port Harcourt for the past four (4) months, and further inquiries reveal that the residence is currently being guarded by fifteen (15) mobile Policemen from the FCT Command. Efforts to reach current Rivers CP Tunde Ogunsakin on his telephone line proved unsuccessful, but the second in command PPRO was contacted to respond to the claims. She reportedly said to a SaharaReporters correspondent, "We have enough men in this command to be on guard for other establishments. Why shouldn't we protect our own property? My brother, don't bother yourself with these kind of stories."

SaharaReporters, however, continued to probe the matter and discovered that the Rivers State Commissioner of Police doesn't reside in his official residence at all because 'Lord' Mbu, as he is called off-the-record, still, reportedly, occupies the place.

 CP Mbu took police vans meant for Abuja and 15 mobile police officers to guard his official residence in Port Harcourt.
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