Heavy Security Presence in Jos As Voters Hit the Polls
JOS, April 01, (THEWILL) - As elections begin tomorrow all over Nigeria, with National Assembly contestants set to slug it out their various zones, there is palpable tension in Jos not only because most of the contestants are ex-military men with the blood of barrack-life still running through their veins, but also because the city has in recent past been fragile with religious and sectarian crises rocking it every now and then.
Some of the senior retired officers on the ballot tomorrow are General Jeremiah Useni and General John Nanzip Shagaya, who are both contesting for the plateau South Senatorial seat.
This development has informed the high presence of security operatives.
The military Special Task Force (STF) on Jos crisis had earlier warned that there will be heightened security presence in Plateau State during the elections, adding that the society must endeavour to cooperate as “whatever inconvenience or irritation these measures may cause are insignificant in relation to their goal of guaranteeing safety of lives and property”.
Addressing the press in the Jos, the Commander of the STF, Brig Gen Hassan Umoru who was in the company of other top security chiefs in the state said “we have directed that all vehicles coming into the state be thoroughly searched for arms and explosives. Hence you will witness heightened security presence at all entry points into the state throughout the election period.
“Furthermore, members of the STF have orders to stop movement of vehicles and motorcycles from 12 am on Friday to 12 am on Saturday on each election date. All these are in addition to other measures that may be spelt out by the Police and State Security Service (SSS).”
Encouraging citizens to be patriotic in exercising their franchise, Umoru who noted that these are challenging times said “we also want to warn all trouble makers that any attempt to disrupt the peace of the state will be met with all the force at the disposal of the STF.”