#KogiDecides: Traditional Rulers Seek Arms Mop-Up
In the aftermath of negative reports trailing the November 16 Kogi State governorship election, traditional rulers from across the state have expressed concern over some of the likely consequences of the exercise. The Kogi governorship election has continued to receive knocks from several quarters over alleged violence that rocked the exercise.
Speaking at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Directorate organised “Post-Election Roundtable on Conflict Resolution with selected Traditional Rulers in Kogi State,” a cross section of the participants complained that they were not fully “carried along” during the period of the poll.
They called on the police authorities to urgently initiate the process of mopping up of arms that fell into the wrong hands in the course of the election, noting that it had become a matter of serious security concern.
One of the traditional rulers, the Olamuro of Amuro land, Mopamuro Local Government Area, Oba Alfred Aiyedogbon, expressed fears that those illegally armed for election purposes might resort to wreaking havoc with the weapons in their possession, if such arms were not quickly retrieved from them.
He said: “Now that the election is over, I believe most of them are jobless. I believe they were paid, and now they are back to being jobless, and since these ammunitions are irretrievable by those that have them, they can use these to cause havoc.
“So, I don’t know what the police are doing to retrieve these ammunitions, because I don’t think the people that gave them can even see them again. We, as traditional rulers, we will give you the support.”
They commended INEC for steps taken towards the adoption of alternative dispute resolution in electoral matters, noting that it was a right step in the right direction.
Kogi State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Hakeem Busari, who commended the traditional rulers for their efforts before, during and after the election, noted that the challenges that were encountered had been brought under control.
He said that reports on post-election violence were receiving the deserved attention, adding that anyone found culpable would be made to face the law.
According to him: “We got some reports about people terrorising people after the election, and I directed my men to go after such people.
“All over the command, we have asked our men to go out on patrol. So, if you have any information; we will go after those people and charge them to court.
“There is the task force on national firearms recovery and we have sought their support, and because of the activities going on at the headquarters (Abuja), we are going to have a peaceful Christmas and New Year (yuletide).”
The Director, ADR, Clement Oga, said from the outcome of the election, which was declared conclusive, efforts must be geared towards ensuring peace and stability.
Credit: The Nation
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