August 18, 2022

2023 Election, IGP Establishes Electoral Offences Desks, Warns Against Thuggery

…. as 24 Armed Political Thugs Arrested in Keffi

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By Yemi Akinsuyi 7 June 2023

As part of efforts in ensuring peaceful general elections in 2023, The Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba, has approved the establishment of the Electoral Offences Desk at the Force Criminal Investigations Department (FCID), Force Headquarters, Abuja, with the Commissioner of Police, FCT, like the Desk Officer.

The IGP has equally approved its establishment at State Commands across the nation with the Assistant Commissioners of Police in charge of the Criminal Investigation Departments as State Desk Officers.

The mandate of the Electoral Offences Desk Officers, according to a statement signed by the Force Spokesman, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, included the collation and investigation of all electoral offences/complaints from members of the public or any quarteto determining culpability in line with the amended Electoral Act 2022, and proffering charges before Courts of competent jurisdiction for necessary legal action.

The Police boss tasked the Desk to commence its activities immediately with some isolated cases recorded during the pre-election activities such as screening, conventions, primaries, etc.

Continuing, the statement read: “In line with this mandate, operatives of the Nigeria Police Force attached to the Keffi Area Command of the Nasarawa State Command, acting on credible and actionable intelligence, have arrested 24 suspected political thugs at Minki Suites, along Keffi-Akwanga Road. The thugs suspected to be loyal to an aspirant in the Nasarawa West Senatorial primaries came into the hotel in a convoy of seven private vehicles.

“Items recovered from the arrested suspects include; eight (8) pump action guns, two (2) locally made revolver guns, thirty-seven (37) rounds of live cartridges, four (4) bulletproof vests, twenty-seven (27) mobile phones, two (2) pairs of vigilante uniforms, five (5) cutlasses, ten (10) assorted knives, criminal charms, and other incriminating objects.

“Preliminary investigations revealed that the suspects, who are thugs for hire, carry out their heinous acts under the guise of being members of the Vigilante Group of Nigeria (VGN).”

Alkali Baba, has, therefore, ordered the immediate transfer of the case to the Electoral Offences Desk at the Force Criminal Investigation Department (FCID) and the immediate arrest of the concerned aspirant for necessary investigative actions.

He reiterated the commitment of the Force to stamping out threats to peaceful and credible elections at all levels, even as he vowed to deal decisively with anyone caught engaging in political thuggery.

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