- Ahead of the March 23 supplementary elections in Sokoto, the Nigerian Army has kicked off its Show of Force Exercise in the state
- According to Maj Gen Hakeem Otiki, the exercise was not meant to intimidate the public, but to serve as a warning to hoodlums planning to disrupt the polls
- Otiki also disclosed that permission and clearance from Army headquarters was mandatory for any officer and soldier to be on election duty
The Nigeria Army on Thursday, March 21 began its “Show of Force Exercise” across the streets of the Sokoto metropolis, in preparation for the supplementary elections scheduled for Saturday, March 23.
Maj Gen Hakeem Otiki, the general officer commanding, 8 Division of the Nigerian Army, Sokoto, inaugurated the exercise in Giginya Barrack in Sokoto and the five-hour exercise covered all the streets in Sokoto metropolis, NAN reports.
Legit.ng gathers that Otiki explained that the exercise was not meant to intimidate the public, but to arouse public attention on the presence of the military as well as its readiness to curtail any form of public disturbance.
He explained further that the exercise would also serve as warning to hoodlums and other disgruntled elements that might plan or intended to disrupt the upcoming supplementary elections.
The GOC, however, cautioned all violators of peace to be wary of the repercussion, stressing that the military were always ready to provide security to lives and safeguard the nation’s territorial integrity.
“I urge you to feel free and to come out on that day to exercise your civic responsibility at the selected places within the periods," he said.
The exercise was conducted in partnership with the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Nigerian Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), among others.
Otiki had earlier said that permission and clearance from Army headquarters was mandatory for any officer and soldier to be on election duty.
The GOC urged the officers to be disciplined, adding that discipline was the bedrock of achieving success in all aspects of life.
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Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that the Nigerian Army pushed back against allegations that it engaged in partisan interference during the 2019 general elections.
The chief of Army staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai, stated that the military was involved in the elections in a supporting role for the police.
Buratai further kicked back against the term, ‘militarisation’; stating that people were using the word without defining it.
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