Six days to the presidential and National Assembly elections, the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, has suspended the redeployment of Deputy Inspectors-General of Police (DIGs), Assistant Inspectors-General of Police (AIGs) and Commissioners of Police for election duties.
The police boss, on February 7, this year, redeployed some DIGs, AIGs and CPs ahead of the country’s general elections.
The redeployment was part of the strategies of the police authority to ensure that officers and men of the Force are not partisan before, during and after the elections.
However, a signal issued by the Force Secretary, was made available to Daily Trust on Sunday, where the IGP ordered the senior officers to suspend their movement until further notice.
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The senior cops, Daily Trust on Sunday gathered, were expected to resume at their new beats tomorrow before the new signal was released.
Issued late on Friday via a police wireless message, DTO: 171830/02/2023, the signal was titled: ‘’Posting senior officers for 2023 general elections duty.’’
“INGENPOL directs that all officers deployed for election duties suspend movement to areas of deployment and await further directive. Ensure strict compliance,” the signal stated.
A senior police officer, who confirmed the signal, said no reason was given for the suspension.
“The signal was released on Friday, but I don’t know why it was suspended,” he said.
When contacted, the Force spokesman, Olumuyiwa Adejobi, declined comment.
However, a top source attributed the suspension to the rivalry between the IGP and the National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno, over the constitution of the inter-agency consultative committee on election security.
The source said; “when the committee was constituted, the INEC chairman was named as the chairman while the NSA serves as the co-chairman. This did not go down well with the IGP, who believes he should be the co-chairman and not the NSA.
But a top INEC official punctured the claims, saying ” the IGP has never been named as co-chairman of the committee. Check the records of last year’s election, it was the NSA.”
The suspension came weeks after the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) raised concerns that the cashless and currency swap policies of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) would pose a challenge to the successful conduct of the general elections.
The commission said if nothing was done to address the cash crunch caused by the policies, it would find it difficult to deploy staff and materials for the elections as most of the services required cash to obtain.
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