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Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room, has expressed concern over what it described as deteriorating security situation in some parts of the country, with few days to the general election.
The Convener of the Situation Room, Ms Ene Obi, while speaking in Abuja, on the State of preparedness for the elections, noted that the security threat assessment carried out revealed escalation of violence with the disruption of INEC facilities, Police Stations among other things.
Ms Ene maintained that the violent activities presents a grim picture of the election and called on the Inspector General of Police, IGP, to ensure adequate deployment of security personnel for safety of election officials, stakeholders as well as the Media.
“The South-East region, in particular, has witnessed escalation of violence with the disruption of INEC ad hoc staff training in Nnewi South LGA of Anambra State by hoodlums, and attacks on police stations in Oyi and Idemili North LGAs of the State.”
She stated that “The CSO Situation Room observed the use of indecent languages, hate speeches, fake news, attacks on the personality of specific candidates, high level of violence during the campaign, with available record showing 52 acts of political violence in 22 states within just a month, leading to the death of some persons while over 20 others sustained injuries”.
On the Naira redesign policy, Ms Ene emphasised that the Situation Room is worried about how the Commission is managing the Naira scarcity caused by the Naira Swap Policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
“Reports received by the Situation Room indicates that INEC LGA officials in many States are still awaiting disbursement of election funds few days to the general election”.
Similarly, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing expressed concern over a potentially adverse effect of the naira notes scarcity on logistics for the deployment of foreign election observers.
“The Naira design policy though had a good intention, but it has equally caused hardship on Nigerians, due to scarcity of cash flow”. She said.
Contributing, the Executive Director Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre PLAC, Dr Clement Nwankwo, advised the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele to print more Naira notes to ease the sufferings of the masses.
Reporting by Julian Osamoto; Editing by Chinasa Ossai; Editing by Oluwaseyi Ajibade