Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
The policeman that fired the gunshots that injured a former member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Opeyemi Bamidele, and five others at a rally by the All Progressives Congress (APC) for its governorship candidate, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has been dismissed from the service.
Making the disclosure on Monday, the Commissioner of Police, Ekiti Command, Mr. Bello Ahmed, said the action was taken to protect the integrity of the Force.
The CP didnâ€™t mention the name of the affected shooter cop and where exactly he was attached before his dismissal.
But available fact indicated that he was drawn by a politician from MOPOL 20 in Lagos State which the police authorities interpreted to be illegal duty.
He made the announcement while featuring on a live television programme on Monday.
Ahmed, who was interviewed via the telephone by the television station on the morning show, said: â€œThe policeman involved is dismissed already and even though heâ€™s nursing some injury; and at the appropriate time, he will face the law of course. Nigerians will be briefed on the outcome of our actions.â€
Ahmed also explained that the politician that brought the erring cop was also in detention and that at the appropriate time, he would be charged to court.
In the same vein, Ahmed also met with the chairmen of political parties on Monday, warning them to abide by the rules governing the conduct of election to prevent anarchy in the state.
He said the command would not fold its arms and allow people to breach
the 1999 constitution and the Electoral Act, under the guise of election.
He said the meeting was convened for stakeholders to brainstorm on
how to ensure a peaceful conduct of the coming governorship election and
that the riot act has been read to them to serve as a guided principle.
The police boss assured the politicians that his men will be neutral in the July 14 election and wonâ€™t do anything that would make them look as if they
were working for a certain political party.
â€œWhat I want from my men is professionalism. We are going to be guided
by the instrumentality of the law, because this election is going to be a different ball game,â€ he said.
On the deployment of more riot policemen in Ekiti since last week, Ahmed said: â€œYou know what is on the ground will determine what will be done. If the situation on ground dictates we behave otherwise, we will do provided it is within the confines of the law.
â€œWe are going to regulate every inch of activity in the state. We will not sit down and tolerate any act of lawlessness, whoever is involved. The police, we are willing, competent to take action against any group or persons, either individual or groups as far this campaign is concerned.â€
The Chairman of APC, Ekiti chapter, Chief Jide Awe, described the
meeting as a fruitful deliberation, saying the police boss spoke
frankly and expressed his feelings about the comportment of political
â€œThe police boss spoke frankly and he told us to warn our supporters to respect the 1999 constitution and the Electoral Act and this we have to do in the interest of our dear state.
â€œWe want to rule over living and not dead people, so we need to exercise restraint in the way we conduct ourselves,â€ Awe said.
His counterpart in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr. Gboyega Oguntuase, said what the police boss preached at the meeting was civility and decorum from all political parties, which he assured his party will stringently comply with.
â€œAs much as we believe in this, he must also not be unaware of something, you canâ€™t rig election and be expecting decorum.
â€œWhat our people will resist is corruption and rigging and once the police and other security agencies are ready to be neutral, then there will be peace,â€ Oguntuase said.
Other chairmen of political parties conceded to the idea that credible election must be conducted in Ekiti to avert crisis.