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IG deploys over 6000 policemen for Rivers extra polls


Solomon Arase

Solomon Arase

As part of efforts to ensure hitch-free re-run elections on Saturday’s in Rivers state, the Inspector-General of police Solomon Arase, (IG) yesterday directed the deployment of 6000 regular Policemen, 14 units of anti-riot policemen, three commissioners of police and one AIG to the state.

In a statement issued in Abuja by the Force public relations officer (FPRO) Olabisi Kolawole, the directive is in furtherance of strategies to prevent electoral violence in the elections.

The directive which takes effect from today, would see the AIG in charge of Zone 6, with headquarters in Calabar, relocating to Port Harcourt, the Rivers state capital, to begin coordination of all security operations the state.

The statement directed the commissioner of police to take charge of security operations in each of the three senatorial zones.
According to the statement, the IG “directed the AIG in charge of Zone 6 Calabar, Adisa Bolanta to relocate to Port Harcourt from today, for pre-elections preparations and creation of conducive environment for free, fair and credible election.”

The statement disclosed that “three commissioners of police have been deployed to supervise security arrangements within the three senatorial districts, comprising Rivers East, Rivers West and Rivers South East, respectively,’ adding that that 6000 conventional policemen and 14 units of police mobile force personnel (MOPOL), would be deployed to compliment the personnel of Rivers state command during the election.”

Recall that the security situation in Rivers state, in the build up to the re-run elections, has been a thing of concern to the leadership of security agencies in the country. This is against the backdrop of the spate of murder cases, abduction, kidnapping and other negative vices, suspected to be politically motivated, which have characterized the build-up to the re-run.

Arase has in addition to the above, directed the DIG, in charge of Department of Operations Sontoye Wakama, “to proceed to Rivers state immediately to hold meetings with stakeholders and police officers in the state command on the need for peaceful conduct before, during and after the election.”

The statement assured law-abiding electorates in the state of a secure and enabling environment to exercise their franchise, warning all “security details to desist from accompanying their principals and politicians to polling booths and collation centers during the election.

The IG emphasised that “only security personnel specially assigned for election duties must be seen within and around the election designated places.”

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