The Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of Research and Planning, Adeleye Olusola Oyebade who is heading the police operations at the Ondo State governorship election coming up today, (Saturday) has said that the leadership of the force under IGP Mohammed Adamu will not leave any stone unturned in its bid to ensure a credible election that will be acceptable globally.
While speaking exclusively with Saturday Sun in Akure, the Ondo State capital, Oyebade said: “For us, to achieve the desired success of this onerous national duty to our fatherland is a task that must be done”.
Still basking in the euphoria of the huge success recorded by the police and sister security agencies at the last month Edo State gubernatorial election , DIG Oyebade who also headed the police operation at the election said: “With the proactive threat analysis conducted, undercover/technical platforms emplaced, personnels’ commitment to be professional, and preparedness to work in synergy with other sister security agencies, the Nigeria Police as the lead agency, and in collaboration with other critical stakeholders is ready to play its own statutory role and will definitely ensure an improved performance in this election.”
“We’re deploying enough personnel, well structured and equipped with relevant gadgets and logistics, to monitor the airspace, the waterways, the entry and exit points to the State, the flashpoints already identified, the key and vulnerable points, and equally provide adequate security for INEC personnel, its materials, the electorate, local and international observers, and equally have “Show of Strength” patrols continually, while covering all the polling centres, wards and collation centres too”.
Oyebade said the policemen deployed to Ondo State for the election have been adequately trained. His words : “Our personnel have been adequately tutored to respect the fundamental human rights of the citizenry. However, we shall be fair and firm. Electoral offences shall be enforced, including the appropriate lockdown period preceding the election proper. Our personnel are prepared to sacrifice and do the assignment with passion, in order to get a credible outing”.
He urged the people of Ondo State to come out enmasse to carry out their civic duty of electing their governor, saying they should nurse no fear as there will be peace before, during and after the election. “The electorate should come out to exercise their franchise. The Police and other security agencies will definitely protect lives and property before, during and much more after the election”.
“They are also advised to conduct themselves appropriately, touching on the approved electoral guidelines, even as related to the COVID-19 pandemic era we have found ourselves”, Oyebade said.
Speaking in the same vein, Commissioner of Police, Election Monitoring and Evaluation, Mr. Garbar has warned those engaging in thuggery and troublemakers to steer clear from the Ondo guber election, vowing that the state will be too hot for them.
CP Umar told Saturday Sun that the Edo election which held on September 19, 2020 was so impressive that the police was given kudos for its display of professionalism. He said :” We cannot afford to lower the bar. The electorate in Edo came out to vote for their preferred candidates . There were over 31,000 police personnel that went for the Edo election with other sister agencies which gave the electorate the confidence to come out and vote for their choice candidates.
“The INEC officials, including all the security agencies did excellent work and carried out their jobs with professional excellence during the election. The INEC materials were totally intact, no ballot materials were hijacked during the election exercise. We conducted ourselves well. The flashpoints in the Edo election were adequately monitored. We made sure that security agencies were there and ensured nobody violated the laws before, during and after the election. We are going to repeat the same performance. We will guide the conduct of a free, fair and credible election.
“We need the support of the stakeholders to talk to their people on how to conduct themselves, before, during and after the election. Ondo election is not going to be an exception. We will work together with other security agencies to map out strategies to make sure the troublemakers are overpowered and outmamouvred.
“ IGP Mohammed Adamu has urged the people of Ondo State to come out and carry out their civic duty of electing the person of their choice. The security agencies are ready to protect them before, during, and after the election”.
CP Umar added that “we have carried out security threat analysis, hence all identified vulnerable points, entry and exit points have been mapped out for special security coverage. The military is expected to perform their required complementary role of outer cordoning. The police officers have been properly briefed on their role and expected conduct during the election, bearing in mind strict adherence to the principles and rules of the code of conduct for officers and men of the Nigeria Police Force. All other security personnel deployed for the election must also adhere to the code of conduct and rules of engagement on election duty.
“The Nigeria Police Force is working in tandem with the Independent National Electoral Commission as well as other stakeholders to ensure the success of the election. The police will not shirk their constitutional responsibility of protecting the lives and property of the citizens. We are assuring them that we will provide adequate security for INEC staff (permanent and ad hoc) and electoral materials; whether sensitive or non-sensitive.
We will also provide equal protection for the electorate, party agents, candidates irrespective of their political party, the press, local, international observers and other stakeholders involved in the election.
“We are not oblivious of the prevailing circumstance globally as it concerns the COVID-19 pandemic. This has placed much more duty on us to be conscious of our safety and safety of others.
As we proceed to the election, a general mop up of arms to curtail proliferation of illegal arms throughout the country was carried out on the order of the IGP Mohammed Adamu. We want to sound note of warning to would be miscreants and other political thugs who might be holding clandestine, or nocturnal meetings to foment trouble with the motive to disrupt the election and scuttle the democratic process.”
The Commissioner of Police in charge of Police Mobile Force, Mr. Mohammed Akeera has also told Saturday Sun that the commanders of 79 Police Mobile Force Squadrons were already in Ondo State and had prepared ground for the today’s governorship election.
Akeera said that the Squadron commanders are determined to exhibit high level of professionalism, neutrality and will embrace a citizen friendly approach in their duties during and after the election. .
Akeera said that the IGP has instructed them just like he did before they went to Edo State “that when we reach Ondo State we must all exhibit professionalism and ensure that the people are safely protected and are allowed.to feeely carry out their civic duty of electing a person of their choice “.
“I am hereby assuring the residents of Ondo State of the full preparedness of the Nigeria Police Mobile Force in conjunction with other security agencies and other critical stakeholders in the election to ensure the success of the election ”, Akeera said.