Off-Cycle Election: IGP Orders Restriction of Movement, Establishes Emergency Number For Joint Operations Room

....  Deploys Senior Officer (DIGs) to Oversee Elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States

The Inspector General of Police, IGP Olukayode Egbetokun has ordered a restriction of all forms of vehicular movement on roads, waterways, and other forms of transportation, from 12.01 am to 6 pm on election day in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States with the exception of those on essential services such as INEC Officials, Accredited Electoral Observers, Ambulances responding to medical emergencies, firefighters, media, etc. 

Force Public Relations Officer,  ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi disclosed this today at a press conference in preparations and deployments for the forthcoming off-cycle elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States.

These elections according to ACP Adejobi are of utmost priority to our democracy, and the Nigeria Police Force is fully committed to ensuring that they are free, fair, secure, and credible.

He said the order which is part of measures emplaced to ensure a safe, secure, and conducive environment for the conduct of elections, is aimed at ensuring public order management, the safety of electorates, as well as assisting the security agencies in effective policing, thereby preventing hoodlums and criminally-minded elements from disrupting the electoral process. 

"On that note, residents and travelers in the neighboring states should note and plan their movements to avoid any untold hardship during the election period.

In the pursuit of police commitment to neutrality and part of the bid to enhance the supervision of the elections, the IGP has deployed Deputy Inspectors General of Police (DIGs) to oversee the security arrangements and ensure the elections run smoothly in the respective states. 

The Deputy Inspector-General of Police in charge of the Department of Training and Development, DIG Frank Emeka Mba, has been deployed to oversee elections in Imo State; DIG Habu Sani in charge of the Department of Force Intelligence to Kogi State; and DIG Daniel Sokari-Pedro, in charge of the Department of Information and Communication Technology to Bayelsa State.

The Police Force also established dedicated emergency contact numbers to reach out to the Joint Operation Room for the elections in each state. These numbers are:

Joint Operations Room Imo State - 08034773600 or 08113659301

Joint Operations Room Kogi State - 07038329084

Joint Operations Room Bayelsa State - 07034578208 09167322691

Other numbers will be rolled our as soon as they become active.

ACP Adejobi also noted that the Inspector-General of Police has ordered the distribution of an additional 220 operational vehicles, including water canons, Armored Personnel Carriers, gun boats for riverine areas, helmets, bullet proof vests, tear gas canisters etc, to the three affected states to intensify security arrangements for the elections to augment the already deployed assets. 

He said the IGP sternly warns all security aides and escorts to desist from accompanying their principals and politicians to polling booths and collation centres during the election as anyone found flouting this directive will be severely sanctioned. He emphasizes that only security personnel specifically assigned to election duties are to be seen within and around the designated election booths and centres.

The IGP, therefore, enjoins all electorates and party supporters and leaders to shun vote buying, vote selling, hate speech, misinformation, and disinformation, snatching of ballot boxes, and other criminal act(s) as the Force and other security agencies will leave no stone unturned in ensuring that all violators of extant laws, most especially the Electoral Act 2022 (as amended), are caused to face the full wrath of the law.  

The Inspector General of Police, in his quest for secure elections, has left no stone unturned to ensure that the Nigeria Police Force is well-prepared to protect the electoral process in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States. He assures that the NPF will continue to uphold the rule of law, ensure the safety of all citizens, and maintain our neutrality throughout this electoral exercise.

The Inspector General of Police urges the public to cooperate with the Police and other security agencies, report any suspicious activities, and exercise their democratic rights peacefully. Let us all work together to make these elections a resounding success, a testament to the strength of our democracy, and a shining example of free, fair, secure, and credible elections.

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