The National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno has called on political gladiators in the country to call their supporters to order ahead of the forthcoming governorship and state assembly elections
He also said security agencies will work round the clock to ensure the polls are conducted safely in the country.
Speaking at a meeting of the inter-agency consultative committee on election security organised by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Tuesday, Mongonu commended security agencies, political parties and individuals for the peaceful conduct of the presidential and national assembly elections.
The NSA urged politicians to call their supporters to refrain from violence during the polls.
“Our preparation for the presidential and national assembly elections took place a few days ago. These elections were conducted with a considerable level of success in terms of security, in terms of collation and other matters,” Monguno said.
“I want to echo what the INEC chairman has just said by way of commending security agencies and intelligence organisations in the process that we just witnessed. Of course, the elections we are going into on Saturday are going to be much more complicated.
“Contextually, they are going to be different, but first of all, we are going to have 1,021 constituencies, meaning we are going to have more people interested, more people voting, more collation centres and obviously, the dynamics would be much more different than the elections that were just concluded.
“While commending the efforts of the various political parties and the individuals that participated in the last election, especially those that called for peace, for calm, I want to also urge the same individuals, especially at the state level to demonstrate the same level of maturity, the same level of discipline by calling their supporters to conduct themselves in a manner that is congruent with the expectations of the larger Nigerian society.
“Of course, there are channels for laying complaints and for addressing these complaints. For the security agencies, I know a lot has been done. I’ve been talking with the chief of defence staff, I’ve been talking with the Inspector-general of police, who is the head of the lead agency in the process of elections.
“So far so good, we do not envisage anything that is going to be terrible or apocalyptic in terms of the next few days. But, that does not mean that we should all do away with our readiness. We must comply with the rules, we must also allow everyone. I’ve said this so many times to exercise their fundamental right as citizens of this country.
“What we do not want to happen is for anybody to take the law into his or her own hands. I want to be very very clear on this, we are going to give the maximum support to all entities involved in this process.
“And we are also calling on the political bigwigs, the gladiators to call their lieutenants to order. Anybody who is itching to undermine this process should please think again. It is not in his own interest, not in the interest of the nation as well.
“Finally, those of us in the security agencies will continue to work round the clock. All the crisis centres are open and we will be talking with the chairman of INEC, if there’s anything that needs to be done, if there’s anything that needs to be added, my office is always open, ready and available to give that support.”
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