The Ekiti State Police Command has denied claims by the Ekiti State Governor, Ayo Fayose, that he was assaulted by policemen.
Refuting the allegation on Friday, Caleb Ikechukwu, spokesman of the Ekiti State Police Command, said that no policeman could have slapped him, as the Police respect the office of the Governor
“No policeman can and will slap a sitting governor or deputy; they are our excellencies,” Ikechukwu said.
Explaining the reason for the intervention of the Police in Ekiti, Ikechukwu said two political parties wanted to have their rallies on the same date in Ado-Ekiti but the Commissioner of Police advised the parties to have their activities at different times because of the security implication.
Ikechukwu dismissed reports that the security details attached to the Governor and his deputy were withdrawn, saying: “We are not withdrawing our personnel from the Governor and the Deputy Governor of the state. We respect them, and we can’t take away security from a sitting Governor of a state.”
He added that the heavy security presence in the state is to ensure the safety of voters in the election.
“The deployment, they’ve seen, is to ensure their safety on the election day so that miscreant, hoodlums, thugs will not come to hijack the process.
“I want to assure you that the Nigerian police force is transparent. We are not a political body. Our men will not be on mask, and police officers posted to polling units will not carry arms, teargas.
“We will have our stationed tactical team for preemptive situations so that we will not be taken unaware, and that’s why you will see some of our men with arms and tear gas positioned at strategic places.
“We have to protect everybody, the collation centres and and escorts that would protect election materials through the routes to the collation centre. The foreign observers. We have NGOs monitoring the process and these people all need security. The security agencies on ground are a proactive measure.
“We have borders. Ekiti State is surrounded by four states, with over five exit routes. So, when you look at all this, you put security in place so that you don’t allow people to bring in thugs into the state. Then we have to check people and movement, to be sure that hired thugs do not come in to disrupt the election process.”