Nigerian Police Chief Orders Restriction Of Movement On Election Day, Bars Regional Security Outfits
The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Baba Alkali, has ordered the restriction of movement on election day in Nigeria, as part of efforts to ensure a peaceful and hitch-free exercise. The restriction applies to waterways and other forms of transport, including vehicular and pedestrian movements, from 6 am to 6 pm on the day of the election.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, March 16, 2023, the police chief warned against the deployment of regional security outfits such as Amotekun, Eastern Security Network (ESN), and others, during the election. He stressed that only personnel of the Nigerian Police Force, the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), and other approved security agencies will be deployed to provide security during the exercise.
The statement further advised political parties, candidates, and the general public to cooperate with the police and other security agencies in ensuring a peaceful and orderly election.
The move by the IGP to restrict movement and bar regional security outfits has been met with mixed reactions, with some stakeholders expressing concern that it could lead to voter suppression and undermine the credibility of the elections.
However, the police chief has defended the decision, saying it is in line with international best practices and aimed at ensuring the safety and security of voters, election officials, and other stakeholders.
The upcoming elections in Nigeria have generated intense interest and expectations, with several political parties and candidates campaigning vigorously across the country.
The police and other security agencies have assured Nigerians of their readiness to provide adequate security before, during, and after the elections, and urged all stakeholders to play their part in ensuring a peaceful and successful exercise.