Wole Balogun, Ado-Ekiti
Deputy Inspector General of Police(DIG) Operations, Mr. Habilal Joshak, has said the security details of Very Important Personalities (VIP), in Ekiti State, would be withdrawn, on Saturday, as part of efforts to allow for a level playing ground during the governorship election holding on July 14.
The police DIG declared that no party would be allowed to hold any political rally not approved by the police until the election was held.
Addressing journalists in Ado-Ekiti on Wednesday, Joshak said he would work with one Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG), Mr. H.H. Karma and three other Commissioners of Police; Ali Janga , J.B. Kokumo and G.B. Umar , who would man each of the senatorial districts in the state.
Joshak said they had contacted security details of Governor Fayose and the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Kayode Fayemi, and other top government officials to report at 6:00a.m. at the police headquarters, in Ado-Ekiti, on Saturday.
In the words of the Police boss, “We won’t allow anybody to go to the polling booth with armed men, this is a breach of the Electoral Act.
“We have contacted them and they have to be here before election commences. This election must not be compromised.
“They will be documented and whoever defies this will be sanctioned, because they have been contacted”, he warned.
Joshak urged his men not to work for any political party, saying any police officer found exhibiting such will have himself to blame.
“Those who want to create posts where votes are going to be bought will be disappointed. We are not going allow it.
“If you cast your votes, you can keep a distance and protect your votes, but if you snatch the ballot, we will cut off your hands, if you run with it, we will stop your legs.
“If you come out with masquerade on the day of election, we will get it arrested and unmask the man behind it.
“My men will be civil, so people are free to come out to vote. Nobody will be harassed, that is not part of our duties.
“Our duty is to secure not only the electoral materials but all the citizens. We are going to be professional and watchful, because we don’t want to be bedeviled with cases of hooliganism, ballot snatching and hate speeches before, during and after this election”, he said.
On the blockade of the Government House, Jashak said: “We are not here to usurp the authority of Governor Fayose. We are not here to rubbish him because he represents the people.
“But we are not going to allow any authorised rally that can trigger violence in the state. Yu can see that the state is tensed up.
“As law enforcement agent, we must be proactive and take actions that can prevent crisis rather than trying to quell it after it might have broken out”, he said.
He said the government house has not been blocked, clarifying that they policemen only blocked the road from Fajuyi to the State Secretariat.
Armed policemen had, on Wednesday morning, sealed off Ekiti Government House and prevented supporters of Governor Ayodele Fayose from entering.
A rally scheduled to take place at the new Pavilion located at Fajuyi, which was within the vicinity of the government house was botched as policemen teargased the participants .
The policemen were shooting sporadically into the air as they dispersed the PDP members who were called by Fayose for a rally to rally support for Prof Kolapo Olusola
As at the time of filing this report, no human and vehicular movement was allowed from the Fajuyi end into the government house.
The PDP members had massed at the new pavilion when policemen swopped on them and dispersed.
Those affected fled in different directions to prevent being arrested by police.
A close aide to governor Fayose called Abiola was arrested at Fajuyi area and he is now being detained at the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) section at the police headquarters in Ado Ekiti.
Journalists sighted him as he was being drgged by the police to the CID section.
The dispersed PDP members, who escaped into the government house were aid to have been trailed by policemen and chased out.