Today 8 February, 2023

IGP issues orders to Policemen on application of lethal weapons at Polling Booths

IGP issues orders to Policemen on application of lethal weapons at Polling Booths

Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, has said that on no account should policemen carry lethal weapons like guns at the venue of political events or voting centres/polling booths during the 2023 electioneering campaign and elections, except batons.

In his lecture, titled, “Engendering Security and Public Safety Among Stakeholders Towards Peaceful 2023 General Elections in Nigeria,” at the maiden distinguished personality lecture of the Centre for Peace and Security Studies of the faith-based varsity, Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin on Thursday, the IGP also said that Police is the major actor in providing security in the conduct of elections, “in collaboration with other sister agency and some relevant stakeholders.”

The IGP, who said that involvement of Police at political gatherings shall be limited to the maintenance of peace and orders and enforcement of extant laws, added that “Officers shall at all times exercise maximum restraint while covering political gathering or deployed at voting/collation centres”.

Represented by the Assistant Inspector General (AIG) Zone 8, Lokoja, Mr. Ashafa Adekunle, the IGP also said, “Police personnel shall use tact and persuasions to resolve issues when dealing with or confronted by agitated persons, and avoid escalation where there is tension.”

The IGP, who said that another set of 10,000 policemen would soon pass out from Police Colleges in the country at the end of December 2022, added that the new recruits would be deployed to augment present Police strength for the 2023 general election duties.

He said that Nigeria Police is determined to ensure assurance of President Muhammadu Buhari on the conduct of transparent and credible elections, appealing to political parties and their supporters to redirect their conduct and activities to enhance free, fair, transparent and credible elections come 2023.

The IGP, who read the riot act to politicians in the country on the conduct of the general elections, said that “the Police would not tolerate any act that can jeopardize peaceful conduct of the general elections, no matter whose ox is gored,” stressing that “the Nigeria Police Force under the present IGP had been trying to make sure all stakeholders in the coming 2023 general elections conduct themselves well.”

The Inspector General of Police, who promised that the force would not be partisan in the polls, urged political parties to make their campaigns issues-based and avoid inciting violence before, during and after the elections.

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