2023: Bauchi police command warns politicians against destroying opponents’ posters, billboards

Samuel Luka, Bauchi

Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Bauchi state commissioner of Police, Umar Mamman Sanda has warned politicians against destroying posters or billboards of their opponents.

The CP while giving the warning during a meeting with leaders of various political parties in his office on Tuesday, said that the aim was to ensure a hitch-free politicking in the state.

“I would like to use this avenue to warn against removing or defacing your opponent’s posters/leaflets be it inter-party or intraparty”, the CP said.

He further warned against posting political banners/posters of whatever kind at any public buildings such as Government Institutions, Schools, hospitals, INEC offices and Worship centres.

According to CP Sanda, doing so is tantamount to an Electoral offence as enshrined in section 92 (3) of the Electoral Act 2022 as amended.

He pointed out that “under section 28(1) of the Electoral Act 2022, the electioneering campaigns has commenced with effect from 28th September 2022 for the Presidential and National Assembly, while that of Governorship and State Houses of Assembly from 12th October 2022. Hence, It is expedient to note that, the pre-Election activities forms a critical step in the Electoral process that will pave way for free, fair and credible elections”.

The police commissioner expressed the commitment of police towards providing security and order within a political system, conducive enough to guarantee a hitch-free and threat-free campaign processes to people and the entire electoral processes before, during and after the conduct of the 2023 general election in Bauchi state.

He said as a leading agency in election-security, charged with the responsibility of enforcing laws and the maintenance of order before, during and after the election, the police would be firm, stern and decisive with all forms of breaches that may mar the process.

“The serenity of electioneering processes is only possible when we, particularly all the stakeholders and key players, put all hands-on deck. As we do recognize the vital roles of all critical stakeholders as integral partners in realizing peaceful conduct of the 2023 General Election in the state”, he said.

The police commissioner announced that the use of quasi-security outfits created by state or local communities under whatever name or guise is not allowed to participate during the electioneering campaigns and other electoral processes as they have no role in the Electoral Act.

He noted that in order to achieve a hitch-free electioneering campaign in Bauchi state, all political parties are to submit their proposed campaigns/rallies to the Police Command headquarters in a bit to avoid collusion of venues and time.

He said that all applications for campaigns/rallies by Political parties should be submitted forty-eight (48) hours before the scheduled date and the permission will be communicated twenty-four (24) hours before the event.

According to the CP, all requests for security coverage for rallies are to be submitted to the Commissioner of Police Bauchi state command for approval.

The police commissioner reiterated the Command’s uncompromising stance that any form of electoral disorderliness, violent behaviours, disruption of campaign rallies, display of a dangerous weapons, or any object during campaign procession or other electoral processes will not be condoned.

He warned that anyone found wanting directly or indirectly connected with such acts would be made to face the full wrath of the law.

CP Sanda appealed to all political leaders and candidates to eschew any form of violence during electioneering campaigns and other electoral processes.

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