African Press International (API)

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Fear mounts on Nigerian elections as police warn on intent to rig it

Posted by African Press International on April 8, 2007

Lagos (Nigeria) The Commissioner of Police in charge of Rivers State of Nigeria, Mr Felix Ogbaudu, Saturday raised alarm over alleged plans by some politicians in the state to rig the forthcoming general elections in Nigeria.

Ogbaudu said in Port Harcourt, about 600 kilometres from Abuja that the police command had received intelligence reports that some politicians were sewing army and police uniforms with a view to using them to rig the elections.

He also said the intelligence report indicated that some politicians had acquired arms and ammunition to be used on Election Day.

“All such persons are warned in their own interest to desist from such acts as it is highly criminal. The full weight of the law will descend on those who fail to heed this warning,’’ he said.

The commissioner assured the people that the police would ensure a level playing field for all political parties and stakeholders during and after the elections.

He, however, warned that the command would prosecute those caught violating the law on Election Day.

“I urge parties contesting for elective posts to ensure that their accredited agents are at the polling stations and collation centres.

“Such agents should conduct themselves responsibly, lawfully and peacefully,’’ he advised.

Ogbaudu urged parents not to allow their children or wards to be used as thugs by politicians because anyone caught involved in thuggery would be prosecuted.

The commissioner advised youths to beware of politicians, who were desperately in need of their services now, but would switch off their phone lines on them once the elections were over, having used and dumped them.

“All stakeholders are advised to be very patient and show sufficient understanding at the polling stations and collation centres.

“I advise politicians to go for this election in the spirit of sportsmanship. Those who win should be congratulated, while losers should look up to some other elections,’’ Ogbaudu said.

Published by Korir, African Press in Norway, apn, tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525 source.apa

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