… vows to arrest, prosecute trouble makers
By Our Reporter
The Department of State Service (DSS), have warned against inflammatory statements that may trigger trouble during the November elections in the three states of Bayelsa, Kogi and Imo.
The Service also vowed to deal decisively according to the law with individuals or groups that may decide to engage in illegitimate acts or inimical conducts to public order during November 11 elections in the three states of Bayelsa, Imo and Kogi.
In a statement signed the Director, Public Relations and Strategic Communications, DSS, Peter Afunanya, in Abuja, the DSS warned against what it described as incendiary comments by some personalities of influence and representatives of non-governmental entities within and outside the country.
Such statements, it stressed, run against public peace and harmony.
“It is strongly believed that a resort to acerbic pronouncements by certain persons will not only heat-up the polity but set the ground for deep-seated animosities and divisions among the populace.
“Also, it serves the country no good if its own citizens, whether at home or abroad, demarket or subvert her through misleading and false narratives.
“With the elections and the attendant contentions legally over, it is expected that we should forge ahead in nation building without rancour or acrimony.
“This is against the backdrop that reckless rhetorics have the capacity to lead to social unrest and instability, which can put the country’s well-being and the general safety of citizens at risk,” the DSS said.
It therefore, called on key players and their supporters in Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa States to conform to the rules of engagement and specifically the electoral law during the November 11, 2023, gubernatorial elections in the areas.
The aim, the DSS said, is to avert situations likely to undermine the processes.
“So far, the Service has substantially liaised with INEC, sister security agencies and relevant NGOs to ensure hitch free exercises in the affected States.
“The Service, therefore, implores all stakeholders, irrespective of their political affiliations or grievances, to engage in respectful and constructive conversations that promote collective understanding.
“It has thus become imperative that public commentaries should shift towards unity and peace necessary for national development and security. This should be our shared responsibility and indeed the priority of everyone.”
The DSS further called on those on election duties, including the media and civil society to avoid things that will inflame sentiments and cause a breakdown of law and order.
While calling on residents of the state to eschew bitterness and promote dialogue that contributes to the progress of the nation, the DSS appealed that broadcast and monitoring activities should be devoid of manipulations.
The Service also called on stakeholders to note that politics should not be used to destroy the country or any part of it.
“Consequently, citizens are encouraged to be patriotic as well as recognise that our loyalty and love to the nation should transcend individual or parochial interests.
“Together, we can build a stronger and more secure future for our beloved country,” the DSS said.