By Abiodun OBA

The Police Service Commission Staff Monitors deployed for the off-cycle elections in Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa states have commended Policemen on election duty for their courage and ability to fairly contain intermittent cases of attempts to hijack the elections.

A statement by spokesman of the commission, Ikechukwu Ani said, “The Officers in several of the Polling Units visited were said to be courteous, approachable and professional.

“Although there were incidents of attacks on voting units, some arrests were recorded in many places especially in Kogi State.

“The Police were said to have also contained pockets of attacks in Brass and some other locations in the riverine areas of Bayelsa State.

“There were however reports of vote buying in the three states but without the connivance of Police officers on election duties.

“The Commission monitored five of the eight local governments in Imo West. In Imo North and East, there were visible patrol of Policemen in collaboration with the Military on the major roads with Police helicopter said to have hovered over the voting space throughout the election period.

“Police Officers were said to have arrived in most of the voting units in Bayelsa very early, properly dressed and exhibited high level of professionalism.

“PSC Monitors sighted an average of two policemen in most of the voting units while in few others one Police personnel were seen.

“The Police were said to have sent early signals in Kogi State where it reportedly arrested several miscreants who attacked Polling Units. The Officers on election duty were complimented by Officers from sister Agencies.

Chairman of the Commission Dr. Solomon Arase, retired Inspector General of Police who monitored the exercise in Kogi commended the three Deputy Inspectors General of Police who supervised Police operations in the states for their quick responses to the Commission’s intermittent requests for Police intervention in troubled areas.

The DIGs were, Frank Mba; Sani Habu and Daniel Isokari-Pedro.

Dr. Arase advised that the Police should remain on guard and prepared to forestall any breakdown of law and order after the announcement of the election results.

He also directed that in the few places where there were pockets of Police misconduct, the Police Management should quickly investigate and forward its recommendations to the Commission for immediate disciplinary action since every act of misdemeanor must have commensurate consequences.

Dr. Arase said the Commission will continue to monitor police conduct during elections as it serves to put the Police on its toes for optimal performance.

The PSC Staff Monitors operated from the nine Senatorial districts while the National Coordinating team partnered the Civil Society groups and operated from the Situation Room in Abuja.

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