Akpan Umoh, Uyo
In preparation for the forthcoming general elections and to maintain peace, security, law and order in Akwa Ibom State, combined security forces on Monday commenced operation “show of force” in the state.
The exercise led by the Nigerian Police in collaboration with the 2 Brigade Nigerian Army, Nigeria Immigration Service, Federal Road Safety Corp, Drug Law Enforcement Agency, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) was carried out in all the flashpoints across the state.
Addressing the Officers and Men of the Force at the Mopol base along Idoro road Uyo, the Commissioner of Police in Akwa Ibom, CP Olatoye Durosinmi said the exercise was aimed at reassuring the electorates of their readiness to provide security for them before, and during and after the elections.
Durosinmi urged them to come out en masse to vote for any candidate of their choice without any fear of molestation as the police remained apolitical and neutral and would ensure the safety of every citizen.
He, however, warned hoodlums or those planning to foment trouble during the elections to steer clear of the state or be law abiding warning that failure to do so would not be favourable to them.
He said security operatives would deal decisively with anyone involved in political thuggery, arson and other electoral offences in the state.
“We want to tell Akwa Ibomites that we are ready for the 2023 elections, we want to let them know that we are apolitical, there is no big or small party, no big candidate or small candidate and we will ensure that all candidates are treated equally.
“You can see the detachment of the Army, the immigration, Road Safety and Drug law enforcement agency, and Civil Defence.
“It is the synergy we have formed over time and we want to tell them that working together with these security agencies would provide them watertight security before during and after the elections.
“We have been able to crime mark the state and keep the felons at bay. Akwa Ibom is more than ready for the election. We want to warn the hoodlums to either relocate or become law-abiding citizens as we are ready to take them headlong if they try to be a security threat to the people,” he said.
Our correspondent reports that the exercise which was carried out in four local government areas of Uyo, Ikot Ekpene, Obot Akara and Abak is expected to continue in other local government areas of the state.