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Osun: CLEEN foundation commends electorate, others for peaceful conduct

A civil society organisation, CLEEN foundation on Saturday commended electorate, security officers, observers, and political contestants for the peaceful conduct of the voting process during the Osun State governorship election.
The Executive Director, CLEEN Foundation, Dr Benson Olugbuo, in a statement said that its observers spread across the 30 local government in the state had reported a peaceful election.
He encouraged that everyone who took part in the process should sustain the peaceful culture even as collation process was underway.
Olugbuo said that although the foundation observed under policing in some polling units.
‘’Some of the officers of the police deployed seem not to have understood the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) directive “on the ban of the use of phones/cameras at the voting cubicle”.
‘’We noticed that there were cases of police officers arresting and hindering the electorate and even journalists from observing the elections.
‘’We saw security agencies preventing them from using their mobile phones and video devices for coverage,’’ he said.
He said that Iwo LGA and Odo Otin LGA Ward 14 were pointer cases.
Olugbuo said that in Oriade LGA, the foundation observed a few cases of police officer on patrol bearing arms around the polling unit.
‘’This runs contrary to the code of conduct of police officers on electoral duty,’’ he noted.
He said that on the whole process the election could be adjudged violence free, however, that there were a few cases of alleged ballot snatching at Ifon Orolu LGA.
Olugbuo said that CLEEN observed inter agency collaboration of security agencies in monitoring the elections.
He said that other commendable observations included the general peaceful voting process and professional conduct on the part of most of the police officers deployed for the elections.
He said that notably was the multi agency deployment of security personnel.
‘’For instance, the Nigerian Police Force deployed 18, 426 personnel, Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corp deployed 10,000 personnel, FRSC deployed 15,000 personnel.
‘’The Nigerian Army, Nigerian Immigration Service, Nigerian Custom Service, The Prison Service, amongst others, also deployed personnel for the election monitoring, to guarantee public safety and security in the election process,’’ Olugbuo said.
He said that the foundation was in collaboration with the Police Service Commission and Kimpact Youth Development Initiative (KDI) and had deployed over 90 domestic observers.
Olugbuo noted that the foundation was currently coordinating Election Security Support Centers in Osogbo and its three offices in Abuja, Owerri and Lagos.
He noted that the Election Situation Rooms was implemented under the European Union Support for Democratic Governance in Nigeria (EU-SDGN).