Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Ohairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mahmood Yakubu, has raised security concerns in both Bayelsa and Kogi states ahead of the governorship elections, describing the two states as politically volatile.
Speaking while appearing before the Senate committee on INEC, he revealed that the Commission will work with the security agencies to deploy Marine Police, Navy, Army and gun-boats to escort the boats carrying personnel and materials for the election in Bayelsa State.
“Both Kogi and Bayelsa are politically volatile. And we have seen the kind of situation that arose during the conduct of primaries by political parties and one or two incidents in Kogi with the commencement of campaigns by political parties.
“We have the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) which I co-chair with the National Security Adviser (NSA). The Police is the lead agency but all other security agencies are also involved.Recently, we had a consultative meeting with the Inspector General of Police and we are working on the deployment jointly with the security agencies for the security personnel needed for the two elections. We conducted our own risk assessment for the two states and we share what we do with the security agencies that also conduct their own risk assessment on the basis of which the security agencies will be guided in their deployment. We’ll soon finalise on the deployment plan jointly with the security agencies, including the escort of personnel and materials as well as the protection of the processes throughout the period.”