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Police to deploy intelligence officers to arrest vote buyers

Usman Baba, inspector-general of police (IGP), says intelligence officers will be deployed during the 2023 general election to apprehend politicians who buy votes.

Baba, who was represented by Bala Ciroma, assistant inspector-general of police, spoke on Monday at a stakeholders summit on addressing the influence of money on the 2023 general election.

The summit was organised by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The IGP said apart from electoral violence, thuggery, and snatching of ballot boxes, one major issue affecting the credibility of elections in Nigeria is the use of money to influence the election outcome.

He, however, said there would be joint security operations to address the situation.

“We will achieve this in synergy with sister security agencies, anti-graft and intelligence agencies, and other stakeholders,” he said.

“The result of this synergy has started yielding positive results as a lot of arrests have been made, especially of persons buying voter registration cards as prelude to rigging the elections.

Some political thugs have also been arrested and are being prosecuted in courts of competent jurisdiction. We will also ensure that the police x-squad, intelligence officers, and investigators are moved to the field to ensure that politicians moving on election days with tonnes of physical cash for vote buying are apprehended and dealt with according to the provisions of the law.

“We have also deployed intelligence officers who will get embedded in the crowd during political rallies to identify with precision, persons encouraging or perpetrating violence.

“Let me state again emphatically that the use of money during the 2023 elections is unacceptable and we will do all we can within the confines of the law to bring offending persons to book.

“Therefore, all hands are on deck and all the relevant security agencies are in synergy on this. We intend to provide a conducive atmosphere for the conduct of 2023 elections.”


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