As part of its preparation for the November 16 governorship election in Bayelsa state, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Electoral Institute have trained security personnel in the state on the electoral risks management.
The training, held in Yenagoa, yesterday drew participants from the Nigeria Police, NSCDC, Immigration services, Department of State services, Customs, Nigerian Army, Prisons, NDLEA among other security organizations that will be involved in monitoring the governorship election in the state.
Speaking during the opening of the training, the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, represented by the Resident Electoral Commissioner in Charge of Bayelsa state, Pastor Monday Udoh, said that the training for security personnel is being put together in order for them to internalise the current procedures the commission has put in place towards delivering free, fair and credible election in the state.
He said: “Many reforms and innovations in the electoral process of the commission have been radically different from what many people used to know, therefore, it is important that all stakeholders, particularly, the security personnel that will protect the process get to know these measures and be aware about the developments.
“The security question in the country has widened the scope of electoral security with attendant challenges,that is why the focus of security personnel should be on three key preoccupations; security of personnel, electoral materials and security of voting environment.
“Security is indispensable to the conduct of free, fair and credible elections, from the provision of basic security to voters at political party rallies and campaigns to ensuring that result forms are protected, the whole electoral process us circumscribed by security considerations.
“Adequate security ensures the free movement of electoral staff, voters, candidates, observers and other stakeholders on election duty, which in turn add to the credibility of the electoral process,’’ he said.