Edo poll: Police deploy 3 gunboats, 5 helicopters, 12 armoured personnel carriers, 25,000 operatives

About 48 hours to the conduct of governorship election in Edo State on Wednesday, the police have intensified efforts at ensuring that the election is hitch-free with the deployment of surveillance helicopters and a combined team of policemen to the state on Sunday.

In all, the police have deployed three gunboats, five helicopters, 12 armoured personnel carriers and 25,000 operatives to ensure maximum security before, during and after the election.

Scores of police vans lined the Oba Market Road by the Oba Market Police State in Benin on Sunday afternoon, while police officers drawn from different commands in the country were seeing arriving the state headquarters of police on Monday.

Two helicopters inscribed with the name of police were sighted hovering over many parts of the Benin metropolis Sunday afternoon.

Marine policemen, who will man the gunboats to secure the waterways in areas such as Ologbo, Agenebode and Inikorogha, have also arrived Edo State.

The Deputy Inspector-General (DIG) in charge of operations, Force Headquarters, Abuja, Habila Joshak, has arrived Edo State along with four Commissioners of Police for effective monitoring.

The DIG, who is expected to coordinate security being put in place for the election, is to be assisted by Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG), Zone 5, Mr Isaac Eke, Commissioner of Police in charge of Air wing, Mr E.D Zang, and Commissioner of Police, Mobile Police, Mr Bello Ahmed, among others.

The Commissioner of Police in charge of Air Wing, Mr E.D Zang, is expected to lead his men using the helicopters to view from the sky and promptly report to ground troops any unwanted occurrence.
The Department of State Services (DSS), Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and other security agencies in the state would also be involved in the exercise.

Speaking at the police headquarters, DIG Habila enjoined the officers to display high level of professionalism and neutrality as anyone found to have violated the electoral act would be arrested and prosecuted.

He police officers, who would be involved in the election to ensure that adequate security and protection is given to the electorate, observers, ballot materials, INEC personnel, National Youths Corps members, party agents and everyone participating in the exercise.