*IGP: Threats assessments revealed Bayelsa, Kogi was violence-prone
By Our Reporters
President Muhammadu Buhari has directed service chiefs and the Inspector General of Police, to sustain the tempo in degrading insurgency, banditry, armed robbery, kidnappings and the likes in the country.
This is even as the (IGP), Muhammed Adamu, has disclosed that threats assessment done before the November 16th elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states, had revealed there was going to be violence.
Adamu, who briefed State House Correspondents at the end of the security meeting presided over by President Buhari, said they reviewed the security situation all over the country and realized its stable, banditry has been reduced to the nearest minimum, and kidnapping has been reduced significantly.
He said: “The meeting reviewed the security situation all over the country and we realized that its stable, banditry has been reduced to the nearest minimum, kidnapping has been reduced significantly.
“The epicenter of this kidnapping as you know in the North-western part of the country – Zamfara, Katsina, Kaduna, they are all very calm now.
The insurgency in the North-east on daily basis they are being degraded and many of the insurgents are surroundering to the authorities, they are giving up their arms and for that reason we have been encouraged to sustain the tempo.
“All the successes recorded that come from cooperation from members of the public, including the press because most of you have objectively assessed the actual security situation in the country, which your followers agreed to it.
“So, we have been encouraged to continue with the tempo so that insurgency can be greatly eliminated from the country.
“Politicians and the hunters that have been working with us and other stakeholders, we have been encouraged to work more closely with such group of people so as to have the information that we require, so as to have the support that we require in other to defeat any form of criminality within the country.”
Speaking on the Kogi, Bayelsa elections, the IGP said it was the intelligence that was responsible for the large number of policemen deployed to the states ahead of the elections.
He blamed the attack on polling centres and snatching of electoral materials reported in the two states on fake police.
Responding to questions on his assessment of the performance of his men at the elections, Adamu explained that the police helicopter that appeared to shoot tear gas at Kogi voters was patrolling the sky to deter potential trouble makers.
The IGP also said that there were reports before the polling day that politicians were sewing police and army uniforms for thugs in preparation for the exercise.
He said the police therefore provided identification tags for its personnel deployed for election duties.
The police boss said people in police or army uniforms who did not have their name tags were fake.
According to him: “Before the elections, threats assessment of the two states and we realize that there was going to the violence in two states. Because, during the campaigns we saw how the opponents were fighting themselves, so we prepared so much for that.
“During one of the stakeholders meeting, I went to Kogi with the chairman of INEC and I also went to Bayelsa. Even at the point of signing the peace accord to conduct the election without any problems, after signing the peace accord in Kogi, within the hall there was problem by the parties. So we knew that it was not going to be easy and so we had to prepare heavily for that elections.
“During the elections, anybody you saw either in police uniform or military uniform that did not carry the tag that has been given for the election, that person is not genuine police officer or military officer or that he was not on official duty.
“Because, we were aware of the fact that or we were told that some politicians were going to sow police and military uniforms, so we device some other means of identifying those that were on elections duty. We gave them tags. So no police officers in their senses because we recruited and trained them before the elections to play by the rule, be professional, work within where you are posted and not beyond.
“There was police helicopter that was hovering, it was on patrol and in the cause of patrol you will see some incidence of maybe people fighting, people trying to snatch ballot boxes. Now, you need to intervene and in the cause of intervention of course you can never use fire arms because during elections we don’t carry firearms.
“So that helicopter you saw was to patrol and scare those that will want to snatch ballot boxes. Of course if you see helicopter hovering over your head you want to snatch ballot box or you have carried, definitely you will know you are being monitored and you will stop. So prevention was our focus with the helicopter.”
On the number of those arrested, he said a total of 11 people in the two states.