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INEC to give uniform timing for Saturday’s election



  FRSC set to support  INEC

Police deploy 7 DIGs, 10 AIGs, others


INDEPENDENT National Electoral Commission (INEC) has given assurance that Saturday’s election will commence at the same time  nationwide, INEC’s National Commissioner in-charge of Enugu/Anambra/Benue States, Festus Okoye, made this statement in Enugu while briefing  newsmen on the preparedness of the commission for the polls.

He said that there would be full deployment of the smart card readers nationwide and that the commission was ready to conduct free, fair and credible elections. He said that it had fine-tuned all the loose-ends encountered during the Presidential and National Assembly polls.

“This time around, we want to ensure that each polling unit in the federation starts the process at 8 a.m. dot on the day of the elections. So we want to make sure that all our ad-hoc staff and materials got to the polling units before 7.30 a.m, the usage of the smart card readers will be universal in all the polling units.

“Any polling unit where the people or political thugs did not allow the presiding officer to use the smart card reader will get zero vote.”

Okoye advised presiding officers to remain calm in the face of any threats from any quarters at the polling units but score that polling unit zero vote at the collation centre.

He warned that the commission would no longer tolerate the killing, maiming or injuring of its ad hoc staff, who might be corps members serving their fatherland.

“We have discussed with the Inspector General of Police IGP “to ensure that all our staff members, including the ad-hoc staff, are given adequate protection from violent attacks during the polls. The commission will protect its own with every passion and means it can muster,” he said.

In another development, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has assurd that it will support the  Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) toward the conduct of credible Governorship and State House of Assembly elections.

FRSC Corps Marshal, Boboye Oyeyemi, made the commitment in Abuja on  while briefing news men on the preparation being made for the election yesterday.

He said  the commission was prepared and remained committed to supporting INEC to conduct credible elections as part of its contribution to the success of civil rule in the country.

“The operational strategies we put in place for the Presidential election proved to be quite successful and contributed immensely to the peaceful atmosphere recorded in major parts of the country.

“We have learnt great lessons from the Presidential election especially in the areas of security, safety and crowd management and these experiences would be put into use in the Saturday exercise,” he said.

Mr Oyeyemi disclosed that the corps would retain the 19, 000 personnel and operational logistics deployed for the Presidential and National Assembly elections to sustain the same level of peace and public confidence, adding that it would continue to work closely with INEC and the Nigeria Police to ensure that vehicles for conveyance of materials were roadworthy and properly certified, just as drivers would be properly screened and documented.

Also, Acting Inspector-General of Police (I-G), Mohammed Adamu, has deployed Seven Deputy Inspectors-General of Police (DIGs) to the six geo-political zones across the Country.

According to a  statement by the Force Spokesman, Mr Frank Mba, an Assistant Commissioner of Police, yesterday in Abuja, 10 Assistant Inspectors-General of Police (AIGs) were also deployed to zonal commands while additional 277 Commissioners of Police (CPs) were also deployed to the 36 states commands and FCT to complement the efforts of the commissioners in the commands.

According to Mba, each command now has additional three CPs deployed to the three senatorial districts in their respective states of assignment.

He said that based on security assessment earlier carried out by the force, some Local Government Areas (LGAs) in Plateau, Benue, Imo and Taraba have one commissioner of police each to coordinate security in the LGAs.

The spokesman said that each of them was expected to work with the command CP to ensure adequate security in each of the senatorial districts under their watch.

In a related development, Mba said that four CPs have been posted to Anambra, Bayelsa, Edo and Sokoto commands specifically for the Saturday elections.

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