2023 General Elections: IGP orders restriction of movement on Election Day, reaffirms ban on VIP aides, escorts, state security outfits participation


• Urges citizens to be law abiding, assures them of unhindered exercise of electoral franchise

Consequent upon the first part of the 2023 General Elections – the Presidential and National Assembly Elections – scheduled to hold on Saturday 25th February 2023 across all States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba has ordered a restriction of all forms of vehicular movement on roads, waterways, and other forms of transportation, from 12 am to 6 pm on Election Day.

Those on essential duties are exempted from the ban or movement restrictions.

They include essential services providers such as INEC Officials, Electoral Observers, Ambulances responding to medical emergencies, firefighters, among others.

According to Force Public Relations Officer, Force Headquarters, Abuja CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, the order which was part of measures emplaced to ensure a safe, secure, and conducive environment for the conduct of elections, was aimed at ensuring public order management, the safety of electorate, as well as assisting the security agencies in effective policing, thereby preventing hoodlums and criminally-minded elements from disrupting the electoral process.

The IGP sternly warned all security aides and escorts to desist from accompanying their principals and politicians to polling booths and collation centres during the election as anyone found flouting this directive would be severely sanctioned.

He emphasized that only security operatives specifically assigned to election duties were to be seen within and around the designated election booths and centres.

Also, the ban on the unauthorized use of sirens, revolving lights, covering number plates, and tinted glasses is still in force, and violators would be sanctioned appropriately.

All State-established and owned security outfits/organizations, quasi-security units, and privately-owned guard and security outfits are also barred from participating in election security management.

While empathizing with well-meaning citizens on the inconveniences the restriction may cause, the IGP urges all active electorates to be law-abiding and turn out en masse to exercise their franchise.

He however warned that the Force would deal decisively with any individual(s) or group(s) that might want to test the common resolve and might of the Force to ensure a peaceful election.

The IGP, therefore, enjoined all citizens to shun vote buying, vote selling, hate speech, misinformation, and disinformation, snatching of ballot boxes, and other criminal act(s) as the Force and other security agencies would leave no stone unturned in ensuring that all violators of extant laws, were sanctioned.

Adejobi urged all members of the public to contact the Nigeria Police Force and the Joint Election Monitoring and Operations Room domiciled at the Force Headquarters, Abuja, via the ‘NPF Rescue Me App’ available on Android and ios, or via the NPF Rescue Me Emergency Toll-free line on 08031230631 to report suspicious persons, activities or request security response.

He said other joint operations/election situation room numbers would be released by all State Police Commands respectively, for emergency contact.

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