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Edo/Ondo Elections: Your roles are critical, IGP tells CSOs, calls for improved collaboration with security agencies

Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr Mohammed Adamu, on Monday called for improved collaboration and support from Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the country as the Nigeria Police Police plans and executes strategies toward the successful conduct of the September 19 and October 10, 2020 Edo and Ondo Gubernatorial Elections respectively.

The IGP said during a one-day interactive session with conveners/representatives of the various CSOs on Monday at the Force Headquarters, Abuja that they play critical roles in the electioneering processes and general sustenance of democracy in Nigeria.

Noting that the meeting became necessary as part of ongoing efforts by the Force leadership to galvanize critical stakeholders to share knowledge, compare notes and experience on the conduct of elections in the country, Mr Adamu also said that the forum availed the Force the opportunity to obtain inputs from the CSOs towards engendering robust strategies to address identified threats and emerging trends as revealed in the Election Security Threat Assessment Reports conducted by the Force in Edo and Ondo States.

The CSOs, on their part, pledged support for the Police and other agencies involved in election security management in the country, commending the IGP for the existing cordial relationship between the Police and the CSOs and also for his quick responses to issues bordering on human rights abuses, sexual and gender based violence.

A statement on the outcome of the meeting by Police Force Spokesperson, Frank Mba, said that the CSOs particularly commended the Police for the prompt arrest of suspects involved in the gruesome rape and murder of Miss Vera Uwaila in Edo State.

The CSOs however charged the Police to help ensure the transparency and impartiality by security agencies in the elections.  

Meanwhile, the IGP assured the CSOs that the Force will be neutral, apolitical and will provide a level playing ground for all in the elections.

He further assured the CSOs of adequate security and enjoined them to assist the Police in identifying impostors who may want to hide under the umbrella of accredited CSOs to foment trouble during the elections.

Also in attendance at the meeting were: the Police Management Team, Clement Nwankwo (Convener) – PLAC; Esther Uzoma (Alternate Convener) – PGI; Auwal Musa Rafsanjani, -CISLAC; Idayat Hassan – CDD; Cynthia Mbamalu – YIAGA; Mma Odi – ACE; Chigozirim Okoro – CLEEN; Mufuliat Finjabi – WTF; Agianpe Onyema, Situation Room; Akwu Ogbadu – Situation Room; Val Ahmadu – PWAN; Oludare Kehinde – PLAC amongst other members of the Civil Society Community.

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