From: David Onwuchekwa, Nnewi
Governorship candidate of the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) for the November 18 election in Anambra State, Dr. Stephen Obiora Mbah, has warned the reported 21,084 policemen to be deployed to the state by the Inspector General of Police (IGP) against engaging in ‘unprofessional practices’.
The policemen had been deployed to the state by the IGP Ibrahim Idris preparatory to the forth-coming gubernatorial election in the state.
Dr. Mbah was reacting, on Wednesday, in Awka, the Anambra State capital. He said there was nothing in itself wrong with a large number of policemen to be deployed to an area to maintain peace and security, but that the fear of everybody was that some of the deployed police officers turning it to a moment for extortion of motorists, other road users and innocent citizens in the State.
“Nobody will ordinarily be against the IGP’S decision to send down that great number of police men to a State where it is suspected there might be disruptions during the election. But the policemen detailed to the State have to apply caution in the discharge of their duties. It will not be a welcome development to see them harassing people unnecessarily, extorting motorists and other road users. Those to be deployed should be taught that and must have good orientation and any erring police officer in this regard must be disciplined by the force,” Dr Mbah said.
He, however, advised the youths, especially the members of the Indegenous People of Biafra (IPOB) not to do anything that would lead to violence or disruption of public peace. He, appealed to the IPOB members not to go ahead to disrupt the governorship election as they had insisted in order no to cause crisis that would lead to loss of lives and property in Anambra State.
The PRP candidate said that the IPOB members, in as much as they are pursuing their right for self determination “which no reasonable Igbo man should be against” should at the same time weigh the implications of stopping the election that might lead to an imposition of a sole administrator on Anambra State, if no Governor was elected, who would not be the choice of the people.
On the face-off between the members of the IPOB and the army in Abia and River States, Dr Mbah said the army should apply minimum force in such a situation like that and not to act as if there was a declaration of war since the youths were not armed.
He, however, advised the IPOB members to be law-abiding and avoid confrontation.