Police Restrict Movement, Urge Travellers To Avoid Kogi
THE police high command has advised travellers passing through the Kogi State capital, Lokoja, and other towns in the state to either put off their journey or take alternative routes because of the restriction of moment over today’s gubernatorial election in the state.
Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Police in charge of Operations, Mr. Sotonye Wakama, who addressed journalists in Lokoja yesterday, said the advice was necessary because restriction of movement in Kogi is within the period of the governorship election (6.30am to 6pm).
He said the restriction is to enable INEC staff and security personnel on election duties perform their duties effectively without interruptions.
“The restriction order is to also enable registered voters walk to their voting units without any hindrance to cast their votes and immediately after leave if they wish to do so.
“Thus, there will be some inconvenience for persons who may be travelling from North to Abuja and elsewhere in the North.
“If you know you are going to travel through Kogi for any reason, I will suggest that if you can, you postpone or delay that trip or perhaps you take alternative routes around Kogi, other than within Kogi,” he said.
He said for those who may still wish to travel, in spite of the advice, they would certainly be stopped and searched because of intelligence reports that some persons were trying to move in all manner of things, including arms and thugs, into the state.
The DIG said men of the Police had been directed to ensure thorough checking of all vehicles passing through the state, in view of security reports that some persons were planning to disrupt the peaceful process of the election.
“So, we will screen everybody thoroughly and this could amount to inconvenience to some of those legitimate road users.
“The second reason is that they would constitute a distraction to the security operatives from their duties, as regards the election and we do not want to be distracted,” he added.
He expressed the hope that the public would cooperate with the Police, saying the restriction is for about 12 hours.
He said adequate number of security personnel had been deployed across all the polling units in the state and urged voters to come out to exercise their franchise without fear.
He assured that the Police was prepared for the election throughout the 21 local councils, warning those who have no business concerning the election to stay indoors.