Burning of INEC offices in Ebonyi must stop, IGP tells officers

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The Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba, has urged police personnel in Ebonyi to put an end to the incessant burning of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) offices and materials by unknown gunmen in the state.

Mr Baba gave the order on Friday in Abakaliki while addressing personnel of the force as part of activities marking his visit to the state.

Mr Baba urged the personnel to do all within their powers to protect INEC facilities and other public facilities in the state.

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“The mode of attack by these hoodlums are complex because they throw bombs and dynamites among others from distances.

“We believe that in addition to providing physical security at the INEC offices, you should liaise with its officials on providing offices for our personnel,” he said.

The IGP said it is the primary responsibility of the police to provide security at INEC offices across the state, before and after the forthcoming general elections.

“Existing INEC offices across the state should be relocated to safer places if possible but if not, important materials should be relocated to safer places.

“I appreciate all your efforts to protect lives and properties in Ebonyi and the various assistance of the state government to the force,” he said.

He noted that activities of the Ebubeagu Security outfit in the state should be regulated by the police as it should not operate unchecked.

“There is a law establishing the outfit and I am sure that its responsibilities fall under the supervision of the police.

“There is no problem with the outfit wearing uniforms because even community police officers wear uniforms.

“They must, however, have proper means of identification and it should be reiterated that the task of policing is everyone’s business,” he said.

The Ebonyi Commissioner of Police, Aliyu Garba, thanked the IGP for the visit and noted that it has greatly boosted the morale of its personnel in the state.

“We promise to redouble our efforts in securing the lives and properties of the citizens,” the IGP said.

He used the opportunity to answer questions and attend to issues of concern to police personnel.

The IGP was on December 22, conferred with the Ebonyi merit award alongside other distinguished Nigerians by Governor David Umahi.

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