BY AYODELE ABERE in Ado Ekiti•
Nigeria’s police chief Mr. Ibrahim Idris, has threatened to dismiss any officer found hobnobbing with politicians or acting in a way that could vitiate the July 14 election in Ekiti State.
Idris urged his men to be neutral and apolitical in line with the new creed of the Nigeria Police Force to serve Nigerians with dignity and honesty.
He spoke in Ado Ekiti on Wednesday during a lecture organised for Divisional Police Officers (DPOs) in the state and other officers and men of the Force to sensitise them on the need to exhibit right attitudes for the coming governorship election.
Idris, who was represented by the Commander in charge of Public Complaint Rapid Response Unit (PCRRU), ACP Abayomi Shogunle, said electioneering process and allowing the will of the electorate to prevail on the day of election were parts of the responsibilities of the police under him.
The IG urged the members of the public to report any police found wanting to the PCRRU that will be headed by Shogunle during the election.
He said: “We were not happy with complaints that followed the outcome of the last election in Ekiti State, particularly regarding the conducts of security personnel. Though, police were not fingered, we need to charge our men on the need to be apolitical.
“We have no business being partisan. Our duty is to provide security for electorate, election observers and ballot materials on the day of election and nothing more.
“You could recollect that those officers that were accused to have misbehaved in 2014 in Ekiti State have been investigated and punished by the authorities.
“I want you to be professional in your duties and wherever you are posted. The police work is service to the people. Don’t intimidate anybody to please politicians. You must think of your careers in the Force and prevent enjoyment of one day from destroying it.
“I know your salaries are not adequate, but there is dignity in contentment. Don’t allow these moneybags to spoil your names and your future.
“Election will come and go and later politicians shall realign and become friends while you will be in trouble, facing it all alone.
“We are saying that we are going to dismiss whoever is found guilty of misbehaviour in this election. If we have strong evidence against you, we will also take legal action against you as well.”
Idris also directed the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Ahmed Bello, to direct his men to destroy all illegal check-points mounted across the state.
“Though, some checkpoints are made to create a defense, those are legal ones permitted to exist. But anyone that is mounted to extort the populace must cease to exist”, Idris stated.