Anambra guber election will be free and credible – INEC boss
THE Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, has assured of a free, fair and credible governorship election on Saturday.
He said the commission will achieve this in collaboration with all the security agencies.
Yakubu stated this during the the Inter Agency Consultative Forum held at the INEC headquarters in Awka, the state capital, today.
He urged security agencies to do everything possible towards ensuring sanity and orderliness before, during and after the process.
This is as police in the state warned trouble makers to steer clear the state and vowed to deal decisively with any element who may want to test the will of security agencies.
However, the INEC chairman explained that because of the technology deployed for the voters registration, all the new registrants had been contacted on how best to collect their voters cards.
According to him, when INEC issued guidelines for the conduct of Anambra Governorship election 11 months ago, it was as if the election would never come but “here we are, it is four days now”.
“This is to assure people of Anambra State that the election is going to be free, fair and credible.”
The commission also harped on the need for signing of peace Accord by all the candidates and their political parties as part of measures to ensure a peaceful exercise.
He added that the electoral body in alliance with the Inspector General of Police, IGP Usman Baba, other heads of security agencies, chairmen of political parties, governorship candidates, members of the Civil Society Groups, traditional rulers, religious leaders and the media would converge on the stakeholders meeting where the Accord would be signed while other key issues relating to the election would be discussed.
The Commissioner of police in the state who also double as the Deputy Chairman of the Inter-Agency Consultative Forum, Echeng Echeng, said that all boundaries linking Anambra State with other neighbouring states would be totally locked down on Thursday night as part of measures to guarantee security within and outside the state.
He said during the period vehicles and movement would not be allowed into the state, stressing that several camps of hoodlums have been identified and were being seriously monitored for action against disgruntled elements in their plots to wreak havoc during the election.
The state commissioner of police also decried the ugly narratives from outsiders about security situation in parts of the state.
He pointed out that about 85 percent of all police assets and personnel are on the ground with positive deployment of about 125 anti-riot policemen to each of the 21 local government areas of the state.
“There is enough security to protect live and property across the state. It is not going to be a tea party for trouble makers. Of course, their camps have been identified and operations are ongoing. We will be on the ground to make sure they don’t have access to come out,” he said.
He said the Department of State Services (DSS) is taking necessary actions with an intelligence agency to take care of situations as they arrive while two Deputy Inspector Generals of Police (DIGs), five Assistant Inspector Generals of Police (AIGs), Commissioners of police, the army, Navy DSS, officers of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC) and those of the Federal Road Safety Corps were battle-ready for the smooth conduct of the election.
He urged the people of the state to come out to cast their votes for the candidate of their choice.