IGP tasks police on neutrality during polls
• To deploy helicopters, marine personnel
Ahead of the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states, the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has urged the police to exhibit neutrality and abide by their code of conduct and the electoral law.
The IGP gave the charge yesterday in Abuja when he addressed assistant inspectors general and commissioners of police.
Idris said the police would come out with a strategic operational order at the Edo governorship election, which would include the deployment of marine personnel and helicopters.
He added that the surveillance, which would be backed by over 200 vehicles, would be reinforced with thousands of officers and men.
The IGP urged the state commissioners and other officers to use the logistics meticulously to have a peaceful election.
He, however, said Ondo might present some challenges to the police due to the high number of contestants.
According to Idris: “This is the area I think we are going to have challenges. I have directed the DIG and he is going there on Friday, because the primary election would come up on Saturday. We have to ensure that Ondo has a free and fair election.”
“We want all police officers that would be deployed for the elections to be apolitical, we should operate within the confines of our electoral laws. We had rerun elections in Kogi, Imo and Kano and I think the elections were successful.”
He urged then to continue to maintain neutrality in all the elections because it impacts on the public image of the force.
The IGP promised to ensure that there would be no rerun election in Edo and Ondo, having had several reruns in some of the recent elections.
He explained that most of the elections “ended in reruns due to one problem or another, but this time around, we are going to get it right and I want all our officers to excel in these elections.”
According to him: “In the commands where rerun or staggered elections would take place, be assured that the police high command is solidly behind you. But, you must ensure that your security plan is water- tight, including ensuring the safety of electoral materials and officials.
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