The Kano State police command has announced the resumption of duty of a new police commissioner of the state, Useini Gumel, after political parties rejected the deployment of at least five other commissioners earlier posted to the state ahead of the 18 March governorship election.
The police spokesperson in Kano, Haruna Kiyawa, announced the development to reporters on Thursday.
The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), and the main opposition, the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) had on various occasions protested against some of the commissioners posted to the state for being allegedly partisan.
PREMIUM TIMES gathered that days before the presidential election the police high command deployed Muhammad Yakubu to the state. He took over from Mamman Dauda who was redeployed to Plateau State.
Mr Yakubu’s posting was followed by that of Balarabe Sule, a former Chief Security Officer (CSO) to Governor Abdullahi Ganduje. However, Mr Sule’s posting was withdrawn after protests by the members of the NNPP.
Another police commissioner, Faleye Olaleye, was reportedly posted to the state but he was withdrawn and replaced with another commissioner, Ahmed Kontagora, who was commissioner during the presidential and National Assembly elections.
Mr Kontagora has now been replaced with Mr Gumel.
The Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of North West election duties, Hafiz Inuwa, told reporters that the intermittent changes of the police commissioners were done across the country to show clearly that the police are neutral and to show that nobody can determine which way the Nigerian police will go.
We are ready for the task ahead – New police commissioner
The new police commissioner, Mr Gumel, on Thursday said the police are battle ready for the possible challenges during and after the governorship and state assembly elections.
“To set the tone of my assignment and for purpose of mutual understanding by all stakeholders, let me emphasise that we have taken steps to achieve three major objectives towards providing the enabling ground for INEC and the good people of this state to conduct and have a free, fair, credible and transparent election.
“First, at the Nigeria Police FHQ level during the last IGP conference, we the senior police officers have evaluated police performance in the previous presidential elections nationwide with a view of drawing lessons by identifying critical operational challenges, ascertaining the performance gaps and working towards addressing them in the next planning process for the good of the upcoming elections.
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“It is in view of this development, the Inspector General of police deployed additional anti-riot personnel and additional state-of-the-earth crowd management equipment to augment the existing security architecture in the state to adequately secure the forthcoming election.
“Secondly, we have undertaken security threat analysis and upscale the level of preparation for the elections across all the polling units at the local government areas of the state and we are fully prepared to emplace the requisite strategies towards managing the identified threats.”
He said he was committed to providing security and that residents of the state should not listen to rumours of insecurity. He said the police are prepared for the expected large turnout of voters during the election.
He said residents of the state should have confidence in the ability of the police to provide security on the day of the election and after.
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