By Samuel Oyadongha
Yenagoa—The Bayelsa State Police Command and the state government have cautioned political parties in the state to conduct themselves in a manner that will not cause crisis in the state during and after the December 5 governorship election.
The state Police Commissioner, Nasiru Oki, said though the Police in concert with other security agencies were playing their roles in preparation for a peaceful election in the state, all the political parties should avoid utterances and claims that could promote violent conduct among their supporters.
Also, the Bayelsa State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Esueme Dan-Kikile, yesterday, said though peace was the panacea for free, fair and credible election, the recent inflammatory statements and hate campaigns by some political parties could trigger violence.
Speaking in Yenagoa, he urged the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, security agencies and stakeholders to be impartial during the poll to give all political parties a level playing field.
He said: “We condemn the acts of violence allegedly perpetrated against the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, by the opposition party members. As the ruling party in the state, we will continue to ask our members and supporters not to react or retaliate to attacks and provocation by the opposition party supporters.
“We will continue to be law abiding and peaceful in our campaigns. Our party believes in issue-based campaign aimed at improving the lives of the populace. We have gone to many communities in the course of our campaigns and seen the challenges facing our people. We have agreed as a party to develop framework to affect local communities in every facet of life.”
He commiserated with the injured PDP supporters, saying the party had lodged official complaints with the police as part of the measures to fish out the culprits for prosecution.
The commissioner called on other political parties to join hands with the PDP-led government to ensure that the December 5, poll was conducted in a peaceful and orderly manner.
On his part, Commissioner of Police, Nasiru Oki, said the Police in concert with other security agencies were prepared for a peaceful election in the state.
He said, “The police have been giving all the political parties adequate protection during their campaigns,” adding that the development had resulted in violence-free electioneering in the state.