By Tobi Soniyi
President Muhammadu Buhari has directed security agencies to do their utmost in ensuring violence-free elections in Ondo and Rivers states.
He said elections in these two states would serve as a litmus test for 2019 general election.
Buhari said he was disturbed by what happened in Kogi, Bayelsa and Rivers states during past elections.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, said Buhari issued the directive at a state dinner in Benin, the Edo state capital, on Monday.
Buhari said the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in Ondo and National and State Assembly rerun elections in Rivers would serve as a litmus test for the general elections in 2019.
‘‘What happened in [the last elections] Kogi, Bayelsa and Rivers State disturbs me a lot.
‘‘I think we should go beyond these actions. Why do we kill each other? Putting tyres on people and setting them ablaze.
‘‘I have told the law enforcement agencies, if we can’t conduct an election in one state then we should forget about 2019,’’ the President said.