A non-governmental organisation, Yiaga Africa has urged the government to shun the use of police and other security agencies during elections. The Executive Director of the group, Samson Itodo, made the appeal on Thursday in Akure, the Ondo State capital ahead of the governorship election in the state.
“Given the pervasive threat to safety and security in the Ondo election, Yiaga Africa urges the Federal and state government to desist from partisan use of the police and security forces to manipulate the electoral process,” he said.
Itodo added, “In ensuring adequate security for the election, security agencies should manage their operation with the utmost levels of neutrality and professionalism. “Respect for the law and citizen’s constitutional and civic rights should be maintained without excessive use of force.” He also asked the security agencies to ensure the protection for voters, observer groups, media, and vulnerable voters, especially women and persons with disabilities.
The executive director believes voter turnout may increase if the security agencies prove that the environment is secured for them to exercise their franchise. He stressed that it was important for the security agencies to enforce appropriate sanctions for any form of violation of the right to vote.
Itodo also called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure the early payment of the allowance of ad-hoc officials for the election.