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Wike tasks politicians, security agents on performance, election rigging

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Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike (right), Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt.-Gen. Attahiru Ibrahim (middle) and the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 6 Division, Nigerian Army, Maj.-Gen. Sani Mohammed during a visit to Government House, Port Harcourt… yesterday PHOTO: NAN

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has urged politicians to perform maximally in office, saying politicians are no longer responsible to the electorate due to the alleged role of security officers in rigging elections.

He maintained that if politicians knew that solders and police officers would not be contracted to rig elections for them, they would be more responsive to the electorate because their votes would count.

Governor Wike stated this yesterday, when the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. General Ibrahim Attahiru, visited him at Government House, Port Harcourt.

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Wike said: “Election in Nigeria is no longer determined by performance, but by being connected to security agencies and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). If it was based on performance, most politicians will change, because if they don’t perform, people will vote them out.”

He, therefore, charged the military to make a difference and stop involving its officers in politics, protect Nigerians, fight bandits and insurgency and shun carrying ballot boxes during elections.

“What happened in 2019 in Rivers State was a shame. I am sure you must have seen where the 6 Division turned to INEC office with ballot papers everywhere.

“With the kind of experience and your level of education, the difference will be clear. There is the need for you to make a difference and restore the respect Nigerians use to have for the Armed forces,” he stated.

Governor Wike also challenged the COAS to be more patriotic and stop the Army and other security agencies from encouraging non-performance by political office holders.

On his part, Attahiru, who said he visited the state to assess the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, commended the governor for the peace and security in Rivers State and his zero tolerance for separatist groups.

“I also thank you for your continued non-tolerance of separatist groups and your contribution in promoting peaceful coexistence among the various communities in Rivers State,” he added.

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