We ‘re fully set for Abia elections – Security agencies
* Begin show of force
By Steve Oko
Security agencies in Abia State have declared their readiness to ensure safety of lives and property of residents ahead of the forthcoming polls.
The agencies include the Nigeria Army, the Police, Department of State Services, DSS; Immigration; Nigeria Civil Defense Corps NSCD; National Drug Law Enforcement Agency; and Road Safety Corps.
They embarked on ‘Operation Show of Force’ in all three senatorial districts in the state.
Addressing newsmen Saturday in Umuahia during the exercise, Commissioner of Police, Mustapha Mohammed Bala, said necessary security measures had been put in place to ensure that the forthcoming polls were hitch-free in every part of the state.
The CP who was flanked by the Commander, 14 Brigade Nigeria Army, Ohafia, Brigadier General Adegoke Adetuyi; and Heads of other agencies, gave quit notice to hoodlums plotting to foment trouble during the elections.
He said that Abia was not safe for anybody hatching any plans to disrupt the election as such attempt would be suicidal.
” My advice to hoodlums is to relocate from Abia because the state will be too hot for them. Those who want to foment troubles during the election should leave now because we won’t allow them.
” We are ready for the elections and we have planned properly to ensure the security of lives and property of residents.
” Logistically we are ready, and we are combat ready. That’s why we are on this confidence- building patrol to reassure residents of their protection.”
The CP urged residents to disregard the sit-at-home order by Simon Ekpa, which, he noted, serves no good purpose.
The police boss said that the apex Igbo body, Ohanaeze Ndigbo and every critical stakeholder in the zone had already disowned the issuers of the purported sit-at-home order which he said was not in the interest of the zone.
He, however, said that security agencies were not taking anything for granted, hence the show of force patrol and other stringent security measures put in place to ensure nobody disrupts the forthcoming elections in the state.
The CP who identified Umunneochi Local Government Area as a flash point due to its multi-border points, said special security arrangement had been put in place for the border LGA.
He, however, assured that all security agents involved in election duties had been trained on proper conducts in line with their professional ethics and rules of engagement.
Similarly, Brigadier Gen. Adetuyi, said that although Abia was relatively peaceful, nothing would be left to chances, adding that all security agencies in the state are synergising to ensure adequate security of lives and property.
“While Abia State is observed to be relatively calm, largely due to many effective operations by the various security agencies, the security situation remains unpredictable.”
He noted that the threats by some elements to prevent election in South East geopolitical zone presented “a real challenge that requires aggressive posture through precursor operations in order to neutralize it.”
“This informs the call for the conduct of joint show of force march by all security agencies in the SE geopolitical zone, including Abia State, as part of the plans and preparations for the successful conduct of the election.
“This is necessary to dominate and be seen to dominate the entire state in the days leading to the elections”, he said.
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