By Adeyemi Adeleye
Police in Lagos State say members of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) are ready to contain all “funny behaviours’’ at the forthcoming general elections.
Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Mr Abiodun Alabi, the Co-Chairman of ICCES made the declaration in Lagos on Tuesday at a meeting of the committee.
In attendance at the meeting were representatives of the Nigerian Armed Forces, the Nigeria Civil Defence and Security Corps, State Security Services, FRSC and INEC officials.
Alabi said the committee was ready to contend with anyone who would want to work against peaceful and credible elections in Lagos State.
“I want to reassure all of us that we are preparing assiduously towards the forthcoming elections in terms of security and making the environment very conducive for free, fair and credible polls.
“We do not want to rest on our oars. We are anticipating that there could be pockets of protests here and there, but we are always ready to contend with them.
“We have been putting measures in place to prevent skirmishes and by God’s Grace, they will not happen.
“In case anyone wants to come up with any funny behaviour, we are ready to contend with it,’’ he stressed.
Alabi also told the meeting that though Lagos State had so far remained peaceful, security agencies had warned those with the intention to disrupt the process to desist.
He commended all other security agencies for being on their guard during the on-going electioneering campaigns, rallies, processions and congresses by all political parties.
“With your collaboration, we have been having a very peaceful environment devoid of any serious security challenge.
“I implore all of us to keep on doing what we are doing; to keep on collaborating and working in synergy the way we have been doing so that at the end, we will have a success story to talk about in Lagos State.
“I thank you for collaboration and for working well with us. We should keep the tempo on.
“Let us just get prepared because I believe election duty is a very arduous task ahead of us,’’ the police commissioner said.
In his contribution, INEC’s Resident Electoral Commissioner in Lagos State, Mr Olusegun Agbaje, said the meeting was to allow INEC and security agencies to put heads together to address threats to the forthcoming elections.
Agbaje is also co-chairman of ICCES.
He noted that the security agencies had been working very well in Lagos State and that INEC had also started the training of security personnel.
“On Monday, we also began the senatorial districts’ training of security personnel that will work during the elections and it will end on Tuesday.
“This will lead to the training of our other categories of ad-hoc staff from Saturday and Sunday,’’ he said.
Agbaje added that security agencies should continue to focus on all identified flashpoints in Lagos State.
The 2023 general elections begin with the presidential and National Assembly polls on Feb. 25 followed by the governorship and states Houses of Assembly elections on March. (NAN)