Godwin AJOM, Calabar
Following the directive of the Inspector General of police, Usman Alkali Baba, that security should be boosted at INEC state offices nationwide, there is heavy security presence at the INEC state headquarters in Calabar.
The INEC headquarters is surrounded with armed mobile police officers. There is also an armoured vehicle with the team while the officers are stationed strategically around the INEC state headquarters along Murtala Mohammed Highway.
When asked of the arrangements for security at local government offices, an official said “plans have been made but I am not sure if as at today there are security agents at the LGA centres.”
Our reporter observed that the LGA centres visited had no visible presence of security agents; the offices at Calabar South, Calabar municipality, had no improved security, sources also confirmed that Yakurr, Ikom and Bekwara offices have no improved security presence apart from the usual security guards maintained by the commission at local government offices.
Residents say it is a risk for INEC and the police to leave the LGA offices without improved security considering the rate if crimes and insecurity obtainable at the moment: “I am Dr Richard Uduak, I am a sociologist. I was at INEC office yesterday for my brothers and his fiancée to get our PVCs, there was no better security than what we usually have.
“I think something needs to be done because though Cross River has been peacefully carrying out the PVCs distribution since, I don’t think leaving the local government offices without improved security is good; that’s a very big risk INEC and the police are taking.”