Paul Obiajunwo, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has advised security agencies against participating in electoral malpractices, saying that such illegal actions lead to electoral violence.
The governor also declared that when a government is performing and is popular with the people, it is difficult to use security forces to subvert the will of the people.
Speaking yesterday at the Government House, Port Harcourt when he granted audience to Major General Enobong Udoh, the General Officer Commanding the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Governor Wike said there was no loss of life during the Etche/ Omuma Federal Constituency supplementary elections because the Nigerian Army and Police did not participate in the snatching of electoral materials.
He noted that the violence that greeted previous elections were fallouts of the illegal actions of security agencies, which the people resisted.
He said: “The last supplementary elections were peaceful because the Nigerian Army showed maturity. I urge the Nigerian Police and DSS to emulate the Nigerian Army in their conduct.
“When a government is popular, there is nothing you can do about it. We are running a very popular government, so there is nothing that can be done to us”.
He advised the security agencies to learn to operate within the confines of extant laws and also accept criticisms in good faith.
The governor assured the military of the sustained support in their determination to fight crime and criminality. He noted that the administration will continue to provide the military with the required logistics support to carry out their lawful duties.
He said: “As a government, we will do everything possible to support the Nigerian Army to fight kidnapping and cultism. We are happy that kidnapping and cultism have been reduced to the barest minimum in Rivers State compared to other states.
“We cannot allow what is happening in Khana and Gokana to continue. We are providing the necessary support for security to restored in those communities. However, we urge the Army to tackle the issues dispassionately. Politics should not be brought into security affairs “.
He said that the Nigerian Army has his total support in the fight against crime.
Earlier, the General Officer Commanding the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Enobong Udoh assured the governor and Rivers people that he will perform his duties, professionally.
He lauded the governor for his outstanding logistics support to the Nigerian Army . He said such support has been vital to the Nigerian Army as they discharge their constitutional roles.
He called for further assistance in the area of patrol vehicles to help the Army improve her efficiency in the area.