Akpan Umoh, Uyo
The Police Command in Akwa Ibom has warned governorship candidates of all political parties and other politicians to avoid thuggery and embrace peace during the forthcoming Gubernatorial and State House of Assembly elections on March 18.
The Commissioner of Police, Mr Olatoye Durosinmi, gave the warning during the signing of Peace Accord by gubernatorial candidates in the police headquarters in Uyo on Tuesday.
Durosinmi reminded the gubernatorial candidates that they were all brothers from the same state and should not do anything to jeopardize the existing peace in the state.
He appealed to the gubernatorial candidates to talk to their supporters and followers to embrace peace and not to forment trouble, stressing that the securty agencies were ready to deal decisively with trouble makers.
He said that the police and other security agencies would ensure neutrality and work with all parties to ensure peace before, during and after election.
“We are here to sign a peace accord. We are here to talk to each other and interact. We are to talk and see if there were lapses in the last election, that we can correct them, something we did not do well on the path of politicians.
“Anything we have not done well on the path of security agencies, we are all here to listen to you. All that we are aiming at is a peaceful elections on March 18, 2023 and a better elections that we all will be proud of.
“So, the gubernatorial election is the one that concerns all of us and everyone is ready but we want to sound note of warning that in Akwa Ibom state we want to have zero tolerance to thuggery.
“We are aware that some people are going to wear oversized uniforms on that day. We are aware that some people will wear uniforms with big bears that they forgot to cut their bears, so we know them.
“We are aware to see some newly painted police or military vehicles, we are aware of it and we have remedies to it.
“The advice is that those who are planning to forment trouble should repent and not do that as we are ready to deal with them drastically,” CP said.
In his remarks, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Akwa Ibom, Dr Cyril Omorogbe, said that the independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) would remain neutral as the umpire for the elections.
Omorogbe, who was represented by the Administrative Secretary, Mr Emmanuel Ogbodu, assured the gubernatorial candidates that materials would arrived polling units on time.
He called on gubernatorial candidates and politicians to spread the good news of peace to their supporters and followers.
The resident electoral commissioner urged gubernatorial candidates to be ready to accept the result of the election as only one candidate will win in the contest.
“We are here to seek peace and ensure that there will be peace before, during and after the elections. So, the call is upon the candidates and their supporters that they embrace peace before, during and after the elections.
“We are here to urge all participants, that is the candidates to spead this to their supporters that there should be peace no matter the outcome, favourable or unfavourable because in every contest, the position contested for will be taken by only one person.
“Two people cannot be elected into one office. So, we should have this mind, cultivate this culture of accepting the result the way it comes.
“On our path, we have dedicated ourselves to do our best in this state as we have done before. So, we will continue to do better.
We will ensure that this time around, we will be very earlier with our materials and personnel. So, that when we arrived early everything goes smoothly.
“We believe candidates and their supporters will accept the result in good faith and ensure that there is peace for everyone,” Omorogbe said.
In their separate remarks gubernatorial candidates appealed to INEC to ensure early arrival of materials to all polling units, stressing that in the February 25 elections materials arrived polling units very late.