Following security report of heightened tension, arms buildup, and possible cross attack by political opponents, the Inspector-General of Police, Muhammad Adamu, has warned politicians and their supporters in Edo and Ondo States, to play by the rules and avoid acts capable of heating up the polity.
BIGPEN reports that Political gladiators in both Edo and Ondo have been engaging in campaign of calumny, bickering and mudslinging ahead of the September 19 and October 10 governorship elections respectively, according to recent security report.
The IGP, on Sunday, decried the alleged “arming and movement of political thugs”, as well as use of inciting statements by the political gladiators and their supporters in both states.
He, however, cautioned those vying for offices in the two states to conduct themselves properly, play by the rules and steer-clear of tendencies capable of undermining the electoral process.
The warning followed the review of the Election Security Threat Assessment Reports submitted by the Commissioners of Police from both States.
BIGPEN report that consequent upon the review of the security report, the IGP, had ordered the Commissioners of Police in the two States to rejig their preparations for the elections to accommodate and address the threats and emerging trends as contained in the security report.
Force Public Relations Officer, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Frank Mba in a statement, noted that the Force leadership is evolving customized security architecture to protect the people and ensure hitch-free elections.
He said the IGP however warned politicians and their supporters against any vice adding that the Force will not hesitate to bring the full weight of the law on anyone or group, irrespective of status that may want to sabotage the security arrangement being emplaced for the elections.
“The Election Security Threat Analysis revealed amongst other indicators: arming and movement of political thugs, use of inciting statements during political campaigns, high likelihood of violence and possible cross attack by political opponents, misinformation/disinformation aimed at heating-up of the polity and deliberate efforts at delegitimizing government institutions involved in the electoral processes”, he said.
Meanwhile, the IGP assured Nigerians, particularly the people of Edo and Ondo States that the Force remains committed to protecting the sanctity of the ballot in the country.
He reiterated that the Police will be neutral, apolitical and will work assiduously with all stakeholders in ensuring a level playing ground for all in the elections.