The acting Inspector-General of Police, Muhammad Adamu, has called on policemen deployed in polling units to be on the alert during the governorship and House of Assembly elections on Saturday.
He urged the operatives to be on the lookout for hoodlums that might want to truncate the exercise and those who engage in vote buying and selling.
Adamu spoke through the Deputy Inspector-General of Police in charge of election duties in the South-West, Jibril Yakubu, who addressed senior police officers at the Oyo State Police Command headquarters in Eleyele, Ibadan on Thursday.
He said the murder incident recorded in the state during the February 23 elections was regrettable and urged operatives to prevent a recurrence.
“I commend you for your performance in the last elections. However, we had a nasty experience at Mapo area, where somebody came in the midst of the crowd, released shots and pellets hit an innocent person who had come to exercise his civic right. The person lost his life. I am happy that we were able to arrest a suspect and we are still looking for more culprits. We don’t want a repeat of such an incident in any polling unit.
“Your roles are very clear before, during and after the elections. You should be vigilant; don’t just sit at polling booths. A policeman is always inquisitive. Be at your polling units on time. Your presence will encourage people to come out. Your absence will discourage them. Don’t let people say they can’t come out to vote because their security is not guaranteed.
“Comport yourselves and be professional. Any act of indiscipline will be treated seriously. Vote buying and selling should not be encouraged. Don’t allow it to happen at your polling units. If you see such a thing, get the persons involved arrested.”
Adamu said red zones had been identified and were being taken care of ahead of the Saturday polls.
He added that the state command was addressing the issue of inadequate security in some polling units during the last elections.
The Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Zone 11 Command, Leye Oyebade, said restriction of movement would be strictly enforced during the elections, noting that the police had no excuse to fail in ensuring peaceful conduct of the polls.