BY Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
The Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG), Operations, Mr. Habilal Joshak, has said the security details of important personalities in Ekiti State will be withdrawnÂ on SaturdayÂ to add to the credibility of the Ekiti governorship election holding onÂ July 14.
The police boss added that no party will be allowed to hold any political rally not approved by the police until the election is held.
Addressing journalists in Ado EkitiÂ on Wednesday, Joshak said he will work with one Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG), Mr. H.H. Karma and three other Commissioners of Police — Ali Janga, J.B. Kokumo and G.B. Umar — who will man each of the senatorial districts in the state.
Joshak said they have contacted security details of Governor Ayodele Fayose and the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Kayode Fayemi, and other top government officials to report atÂ 6amÂ at the police headquarters in Ado EkitiÂ on Saturday.
â€œWe wonâ€™t allow anybody to go to the polling booth with armed men. This is a breach of the Electoral Act.
â€œWe have contacted them and they have to be here before election commences. This election must not be compromised. They will be documented and whoever defies this will be sanctioned, because they have been contacted,â€ he warned.
Joshak urged his men not to work for any political party, saying any police officer found exhibiting such will have himself to blame.
â€œThose who want to create posts where votes are going to be bought will be disappointed. We are not going allow it.
â€œIf you cast your votes, you can keep a distance and protect your votes, but if you snatch the ballot, we will cut off your hands, if you run with it, we will stop your legs.
â€œIf you come out with masquerade on the day of election, we will get it arrested and unmask the man behind it.
â€œMy men will be civil, so people are free to come out to vote. Nobody will be harassed, that is not part of our duties.
â€œOur duty is to secure not only the electoral materials but all the citizens. We are going to be professional and watchful, because we donâ€™t want to be bedevilled with cases of hooliganism, ballot snatching and hate speeches before, during and after this election,â€ he said.
On the blockage of the Government House, Joshak said: â€œWe are not here to usurp the authority of Governor Fayose. We are not here to rubbish him because he represents the people.
â€œBut we are not going to allow any authorised rally that can trigger violence in the state. You can see that the state is tensed up.
â€œAs law enforcement agents, we must be proactive and take actions that can prevent crisis rather than trying to quell it after it might have broken out,â€ he said.
He said the Government House has not been blocked, clarifying that the policemen only blocked the road from Fajuyi to the state secretariat.