A former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, has been appointed as the National Security Adviser by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
By his appointment, the 62-year-old retired Assistant Inspector of Police chief is now the first non-military NSA Nigeria has had since returning to democratic rule in 1999.
Muhammadu Gambo Jimeta and Islamila Gwarzo are former NSAs with similar backgrounds to Ribadu, but they were appointed during the military era.
Ribadu was first named the Special Adviser to President Tinubu on security before his recent upgrade.
The Adamawa-born security chief has been a close ally of President Tinubu since 2011, when he contested to be president under the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria.
The party was majorly funded by President Tinubu but later merged to form the current ruling party, All Progressives Congress.
In 2015, Ribadu contested to be the governor of Adamawa state under the Peoples Democratic Party, but he lost.
Rumours of his possible appointment had dominated headlines days after President Tinubu assumed office.
There were arguments about his qualification for the role by some security analysts, who argued that the role should be reserved for retired military officers.
But, some others argued that Ribadu is the perfect man for the role.
An accomplished journalist and public relations expert, Yushau Shuaib, stated:
“Ribadu’s pragmatic approach to intelligence gathering and crime-fighting while in EFCC earned him global recognition and awards.
“It led to the delisting of Nigeria from the Financial Action Task Force List of Non-Cooperative Countries and Territories, its admission into the prestigious Egmont Group, and the withdrawal of the US Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (Advisory on Nigeria.”
On his part, activist and leading African advocate Mallam Hamzat Lawal noted that:
“Ribadu has a reputation for fostering collaboration among various agencies and building strong partnerships with international allies.
“This collaborative approach will undoubtedly enhance our nation’s ability to address emerging threats, promote diplomacy, and ensure the safety of our citizens both at home and abroad.”