Security cordon thrown on Ekiti as governorship poll commences

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A security cordon has been thrown on Ekiti as the simultaneous  accreditation and voting process is  set to commence in Saturday’s  governorship election.

Correspondents of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) spread across the three senatorial districts report that armed policemen and personnel of sister security agencies such as the NSCDC, NDLEA and the FRSC  were sighted at strategic locations.

In  Ikere-Ekiti, home town of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) candidate, Prof. Olusola Kolapo,  there was heavy security presence, with personnel of the police and NSCDC keeping vigil on the fringes of polling units.

At the Ofamofuru  Polling Unit 007, Ward  02, of the PDP candidate, no fewer than 10 mobile police officers were sighted keeping vigil.

In Isan-Ekiti, Oye Local Government Area, Ekiti North Senatorial District,  where the All Progressives Congress(APC) candidate, Dr Kayode Fayemi, hails from, there was also heavy security presence.

At the Polling Unit 009 Ward 11 of the APC flagbearer , no fewer than five policemen were seen maintaining law and order as at 7.30 a.m.

There was also tight security at  the Unit 2  Ward 7, Federal Housing Estate Polling Unit, in Ado-Ekiti Central Senatorial District, with five policemen sighted.

NAN reports that the  police had  deployed 30,000 operatives, two helicopters and 250 patrol vehicles, including  Armoured Personnel Carriers, for the  election.

The security operation for the poll would be supervised by the Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Operations, Joshiak Habila, who would be assisted by an Assistant Inspector-General of Police, four Commissioners of Police, eight Deputy Commissioners of Police and 18 Assistant Commissioners of Police.

Each Senatorial district would be manned by a Commissioner of Police while no fewer than four policemen and two others from other security agencies will be on duty at each polling unit throughout the state.

NAN further reports that  Commissioners of Police and their personnel in states close to Ekiti  such as Ondo, Osun, Kwara, Kogi, Ogun, Edo and Oyo  had  been directed  to be on the red alert with their personnel.

The Police Mobile Force Unit, Counter-Terrorism Unit, the Special Protection Unit, the Anti-Bomb Squad, the Armament Unit,  Force Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department and the sniffer dogs section would also participate in the joint security effort.

The police  had said  that  a threat assessment had been carried out in the state and all identified flashpoints and trouble-prone areas had been addressed.

Restriction on  vehicular movement in and out of Ekiti State  also commenced  from  midnight of Friday and would be in place till  the end of the election while  travellers and other road users were advised to make use of alternative routes.

NAN reports  that those on essential duties were, however, being granted passage.

NAN further reports that  other security and safety agencies, including the military and FRSC,  who are members of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security in the state,  would complement the  police during the election.

Already, the NSCDC  had deployed   19,997 personnel    for the exercise and had  also ordered the deployment of mobile surveillance vehicles and sniffer dogs. (NAN)

Biola Lawal

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