Police: Why we stopped Fayose *Say, if you snatch ballot box, you'll lose your hand or leg

By Editor on 12/07/2018

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Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris

“If you cast your votes, you can keep a distance and protect your votes, but if you snatch the ballot, we will cut off your hands, if you run with it, we will stop your legs."

These were the words with which the Nigerian Police Force (NPF), on Wednesday, vowed to stop any form of violence that could erupt in Saturday's governorship election in Ekiti State.

It was also a day the Deputy Inspector General of Police (Operations), Mr. Habila Joshak, who made the declaration, gave the police's side of the crisis that erupted at the Government House, of the state on the same day, which led to an alleged assault on Governor Ayo Fayose.
Fayose, had claimed that the police, which stormed the Government House, in the morning of Wednesday, apart from preventing people from going in or coming out, physically manhandled him, leaving him with some injuries, as he was not only slapped, but also tear-gassed. 
But, the police boss, explained that it all had to do with the planned rally of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ado-Ekiti, which was stopped to prevent possible breakdown of law and order.

Insisting that no party will be allowed to hold any political rally not approved by the police until the election is held, Joshak, who is the overall commander of security operations for the Ekiti State governorship election, said the PDP did not obtain police permit for the botched rally.

The police chief who addressed reporters earlier in the day before the Government Hose drama occurred, described the action as a “pre-emptive measure” that was adopted because of the tense situation in the state.

Joshak said: “Because of the tense situation, we had to do what we did. We heard that His Excellency (Fayose) was doing something in the Government House, the cyclists narrowed the road but we won’t go and block his place.

“We don’t want people to gather and start another rally because dispersing them with smoke is not the best. The pre-emptive measure was okay.

“It is better to be pre-emptive by ensuring that the situation did not degenerate.”

Joshak added: “We are not here to usurp the authority of Governor Fayose. We are not here to rubbish him because he represents the people

“But we are not going to allow any authorised rally that can trigger violence in the state. You can see that the state is tensed up.

“As law enforcement agents, we must be proactive and take actions that can prevent crisis rather than trying to quell it after it might have broken out.”

Joshak said the security details of Very Important Personalities (VIPs) in Ekiti will be withdrawn on Saturday to give all parties participating in the election a level playing field.

The police boss added that no party will be allowed to hold any political rally not approved by the police until the election is held.

The DIG explained that he will work with one Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG), Mr. H.H. Karma and three other Commissioners of Police; Ali Janga, J.B. Kokumo and G.B. Umar, who will man each of the senatorial districts in the state.

Joshak said they have contacted security details of Governor Fayose and the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Kayode Fayemi and other top government officials to report at 6am at the police headquarters in Ado Ekiti on Saturday.

He said: “We won’t allow anybody to go to the polling booth with armed men, this is a breach of the Electoral Act.

“We have contacted them and they have to be here before election commences. This election must not be compromised. They will be documented and whoever defies this will be sanctioned, because they have been contacted”, he warned.

Joshak urged his men not to work for any political party, saying any police officer found exhibiting such will have himself to blame.

“Those who want to create posts where votes are going to be bought will be disappointed. We are not going allow it.

Image result for fayose

Fayose, on Wednesday

“If you cast your votes, you can keep a distance and protect your votes, but if you snatch the ballot, we will cut off your hands, if you run with it, we will stop your legs.

“If you come out with masquerade on the day of election, we will get it arrested and unmask the man behind it.

“My men will be civil, so people are free to come out to vote. Nobody will be harassed, that is not part of our duties.

“Our duty is to secure not only the electoral materials but all the citizens. We are going to be professional and watchful, because we don’t want to be bedeviled with cases of hooliganism, ballot snatching and hate speeches before, during and after this election.”


 

 

Source The Nation

Posted on July, 12 2018

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