[Here comes a new Inspector General of Police who seems not only highly-recommended but is also new media-savvy; what more do we want: criminals - civilian & police toll-points varieties - having their faces on twitter, facebook ... within moments of criminal activities. I'm sure all Nigerians want him to succeed. It's in his hands. TOLA.]
The new IGP’s LinkedIn connection
by Taiwo Obe
To tell the truth: I was shocked.
I didn’t expect to find the new Inspector General of Police, Mohammed D Abubakar on LinkedIn. But, that’s really silly of me; isn’t LinkedIn where I have always told my friends to be; to connect with other professionals? C’mon, isn’t a senior police officer supposed to be a professional? And, isn’t Bode Ojajuni, the one-time public relations officer of the Lagos State Police Command, now back as Divisional Police Officer of the Bode Thomas, Surulere, Police Station, my connection on Linkedin?
So, shortly after news filtered in of Abubakar’s appointment as acting IGP by President Goodluck Jonathan, and searching in vain for information on him on the Nigeria Police website, I decided to do what I should have done in the first place: Google “MD Abubakar+Nigeria Police.”
Behold, the first entry was “Md Abubakar – Nigeria. Linkedin.” With his description as “Assistant Inspector General of Police at Nigeria Police Force,” I knew I had caught my big fish. I told my friend who was fiddling with his iPad around the corner from me: “This our new IG is a ‘modern’ man.”
And, with 167 Connections (contacts) and 14 people recommending him, then he can be counted as not a casual Linkedin-er. Six of my contacts are even connected to him: Harry Iwuala, Modele Sarafa-Yusuf, Kunle Aderinokun, Sam Amadi, Onyekachi Nwosu and Samm Audu. There must be a Globacom connection somewhere as three of these were former staff of the telecommunications company.
I decided to scrutinise the recommendations: after all, why I went on this mission was to have some idea about the man who would be the nation’s Number One Cop; at a time Nigeria is in dire need of modern and effective policing.
The first recommendation was by someone identified as “Olu F.O. Senior Advisor, City of London Police.” Olu means the person is Nigerian and Yoruba, but how come he is Senior Advisor of the City of London Police? I go on a search before reading the recommendation. This fellow’s full name, I found out, is Olu Ogunshakin, and he is from Ekiti State with a PhD in Police Studies from the United Kingdom. Subliminally, I recalled that the Minister of Police Affairs, Caleb Olubolade, a retired naval captain, is also from Ekiti State. I filed that away, and read the recommendation, which was filed on 25 January 2012, same day as the announcement. Interesting. Here’s the recommendation: “MD’s reputation as a dedicated police officer who is a consummate professional precedes him. He is very approachable and fair in his dealings with every officer that comes across him. In my experience, having worked as a senior adviser to the police in UK for over 12 years, I have never known a senior police officer so admired and respected for his diligence and professionalism. I am proud to call Md my colleague and I wish him well in his future endeavours.”
This other one caught my attention. It’s by Major-Gen A Adewunmi (rtd), and filed on 6 January 2012. He wrote: “MD I know was my student at the National Institute For (Policy and) Strategic Studies, Nigeria. A highly competent, well trained, intelligent, a different type of Senior Police Officer (Commissioner of Police) then. A very good professional and good to be around with. A loyal and a sincere person.”
Let’s take this one by B Junaid, deputy national coordinator, Community Policing Nigeria, filed on 2 September 2011. “MD Abubakar is one of the most dynamic and intrinsically motivating leader(s) I have been fortunate to work with. His outstanding and brain challenging work as Lagos state Police Commissioner established the foundation for the present low crime rates in that cosmopolitan city thereby improving quality of life for over 12 million Lagosians.”
Oh, he was “our” commissioner. That means I would have to call Bode Ojajuni. Perhaps he had also worked with him. But, let’s finish with the recommendations.
Adebukola Kafilat Adejare was on National Youth Service as an IT Analyst in Benin City when MD was there as AIG Zone 5. Even as she didn’t work directly with MD, according to the information on Linkedin, she knows this much:: “…he is a great man with unique personality. I served in AIG Zone 5 Benin City. AIG MD Abubakar transformed the zone to a conducive, efficient, more disciplined environment and the trend continued even when he left. I salute you Sir! He was a great leader and a father. I strongly recommend him any day.”
Harry Iwuala, aforementioned, wrote on 2 September 2011: “MD Abubakar is a highly dependable officer with impeccable integrity in an organization that many have come to associate with corruption. Having worked with him and many others on very many sports security projects, it is not likely that any officer can attract the same rating as high as that of MD Abubakar. He is also very compassionate and ever ready to attend to the responsibilities of his high office without prejudice to status. His conduct on and off duty is a manifestation of the high trainings he has received on the job. He is a good leader who can function efficiently and with distinction at the highest level of his profession.”
There are a couple others but I think those ones are representative.
Yes, Ojajuni confirmed: MD was the commissioner when he was the Lagos PPRO. Perhaps, soon, he will seek his connection, just as I did, before signing out. If MD discharges himself of the accusation of being a “religious fanatic”, gets confirmed as the Inspector-General of Police, and finds time for Linkedin while trying to dislodge the Boko Haramists, perhaps he might accept my invitation to be connected with him. I bet, he will: one of his interests is: making/meeting good friends. And, sooner or later, who knows, I might have to write my own recommendation. I know what Ojajuni’s would be: the man is NOT corrupt.
*Taiwo Obe, Executive Director of Harpostrophe, is a media guru who consults for top businesses. His base is at Nigeria’s business capital, Lagos.