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Group tasks INEC, security agencies on fairness


INEC-boxNSCDC deploys 20,000 personnel

Amid the allegation of compromise against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the security agencies, a coalition of civil society organisations has pleaded for fairness at the polls.

The group, the Nigerian Humanitarian Association (NHA) faulted the fear of insecurity at the election, saying it was over- blown because the state has not been under a threat of insecurity.

In a statement yesterday by its Director General, Igwekala Leo Ugomaduefule and Secretary, Hajiya Amina Umar, it said it was crucial that the stakeholders ensure that the polls are free and credible.

The coalition said: “Successful elections have been held in Bayelsa State and the north-east region that had more security challenges. But in Edo State, there is no history of militants or insurgents, which had compelled the INEC to postpone the polls in the first place.”It implored the commission and security agencies to discharge their duties without bias.

The statement read: “The Inspector General of Police Mr. Ibrahim Idris should not allow himself, or his office to be used for any reason, having replaced the commissioner of police in the state for the third time in close succession. Government should not create unnecessary tension in the state.”

The group also urged the international community deployed for the election to ensure that the polls are not only free and fair, but that the policy of one man, one vote is upheld.

“The Federal Government, through the security agencies, should provide adequate security before, during and after the election,” the statement added.
The group appealed to the voters to conduct themselves in a manner that would not create room for the INEC to declare the election as inconclusive.

Meanwhile, the Commandant General, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Abdullahi Gana, has announced the deployment of 20,000 personnel for the polls.The Corps Public Relations Officer, Mr. Emmanuel Okeh, said this in a statement in Abuja.

He said the Acting Deputy Commandant General, Operations, Hillary Madu, had been relocated to Edo for the election.Okeh added he would be assisted by two Assistant Commandant Generals (ACGs) in charge of Zone G, Benin and Zone E, Owerri, while five commandants would be drawn from the neighbouring states.According to him, the personnel would be re-deployed from Kogi, Ondo, Delta, Bayelsa and Anambra state’s commands.

He advised them to work in synergy with other sister security agencies to ensure a peaceful conduct of the election.Okeh warned that any personnel caught in any act of misconduct would be dealt with, in accordance with the laws and ethics of the corps.

He explained that the commandant had also approved the deployment of sniffer dogs and specialised units like the SWAT, CBRN, CTU, undercover and special forces to protect the critical infrastructure and national assets in the state and its environs.He urged politicians in the state to play according to the rules.

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