The Borno state police Command yesterday said it has uncovered plans by dubious persons with ulterior motives to pose as electoral observers so as to beat attention of security personnel ,in order to perpetrate electoral fraud , vote buying and other acts that are inimical to peaceful conduct of elections in the state.
This was contained in a statement issued to newsmen by the police public relations officer, DSP Edet Okon, in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital.
To this end, the statement said the commissioner of Police, Damian Chukwu warns that any person or group of persons who impersonate election observers , electoral officials, security agents , or any other official connected with the elections ( knowing well that he or she has not been so accreditted or employed by INEC or the various security agencies, as the case may be ) , will be arrested and prosecuted in line with the electoral Act and other extant laws.
” As directed by the Inspector-General of Police, (and in line with the curfew imposed by the state government) there will be restriction of vehicular movement from 10.30pm on the eve of the Election till 6.00pm on Election Day.
” For the avoidance of doubt, the movement restriction will affect all motor vehicles, tricycles, motorcycles, bicycles, Camels, Horses, Donkeys, Cattles etc. It will however exclude those on essential duties who, as a matter of necessity must display their valid Identity cards.
” Eligible voters (with valid PVCs) are therefore advised to proceed in a peaceful manner to their various polling units and to also conduct themselves in an orderly manner throughout the duration of the exercise. They are equally advised to limit themselves to their voting areas as unnecessary loitering and movements suspected to likely to cause a breach of public peace will not be condoned.
” The Command is assuring members of the public that security deployments are emplaced to safeguard all law abiding citizens to exercise their franchise without fear, apprehension, intimidation or violence,” the statement reads.
DSP Okon added that the Commissioner of Police further wishes to inform the general public that the Command, in collaboration with other security agencies has set up a Joint Operations Centre where complaints arising from the conduct of the elections would be treated with dispatch.
He said the Centre could be reached on the following contacts – 08068969292, 08035924493, 08038791313, 08024762021, 08173015010, and 08098134694, adding that complaints may also be directed to the Command’s Control Room and CRU nos – 09053872280, 09053872240 and 08068075581.
Continuing he said :” While appealing for the continued support and cooperation of all stakeholders and other members of the public towards the conduct of free, fair, credible and violence-free elections, the Command wishes the Borno state electorate a generally peaceful conduct of the exercise.”