Home » “We recorded 54 major incidents and made 45 arrests during the elections in Lagos” -Police

“We recorded 54 major incidents and made 45 arrests during the elections in Lagos” -Police

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The Lagos state commissioner of police, Idowu Owohunwa has reviewed the patterns and trends of crimes in the state during the just concluded election season. He says the police recorded a total of 54 major incidents and made 45 arrests during the elections, while several weapons and other vote-buying items were also recovered.

During his inaugural meeting with strategic commanders in Lagos State Police Command, CP Idowu Owohunwa emphasized the need to refocus on traditional policing functions and address the fear of crime among Lagosians. He outlined his policing values and expectations for restoring trust, ethical standards, and efficiency within the system, and called for support and cooperation from the assembled managers to achieve his vision and plans.

He said: “…the Inspector General of Police and indeed, Lagosians expect us to sustain our sense of service and professionalism towards guaranteeing the safety and security of all citizens in Lagos State. In this regard, the immediate challenge facing us is the increasing threat that violent criminals, particularly, cultists are posing to Lagosians. Indeed, the activities of cultists have today, evolved to become the most concerning threat to public peace and security in the State and it is expedient that we strengthen our operational strategies and action plans that will address this potent threat.

“While the details of our operational approach to this security challenge will form a fundamental part of our discourse, as a starting point the need to strengthen the capacity of Area Commands and Divisional Police Officers to proactively respond to this threat has become imperative. This approach calls for the deployment of an elitist, highly-mobile, well-trained, well-equipped, highly experienced, operationally-tested, and compact Special Operations Police Units to Area Commands where cultism is most prevalent.


“The plan will ensure that the unique intelligence assets of the Force are not optimally leveraged on to support our anti-cultism operations, it will be executed in a way as to ensure that the anti-cultism battle is taken right to the doorsteps, hideouts, and safe havens of cultists in such a coordinated and sustainable process until they are unmasked, smoked out, brought to justice and stability restored across the State.” He told the policemen and journalists at the meeting

The meeting also served as an opportunity to conduct a postmortem of the just concluded general elections in Lagos State, debrief on experiences, and evaluate performances to draw lessons that will strengthen election security governance operations in the future. Additionally, a comprehensive review of the patterns and trends of crimes in the state was conducted, and current policing strategies were appraised to evolve new operational strategies and action plans for the sustainable stabilization of internal security order in Lagos State.

According to him, “…the Police recorded a combined total of fifty-four (54) major incidents across all the thirteen thousand, three hundred and twenty-five (13,325) Polling Units in the State, while a total of forty-five (45) suspects were arrested during the two electoral engagements. Two thousand, eight hundred and seventy (2,870) Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) were recovered in the course of police election security operations from various electoral offenders. Other recovered items include seven (7) weapons of violence including two (2) firearms, twenty-eight (28) snatched Ballot Boxes, One (1) BVAS machine, and One (1) POS Machine being deployed for Vote Buying.

Adding that: “Out of the cases under investigation, it is also on record that Lagos State was the first Command to conclude the investigation of the first sets of fourteen (14) eight electoral offenses and promptly processed eight (8) to INEC for prosecution in line with the Electoral Act and the directives of the Inspector General of Police, while others involving unlawful possession of firearms and sundry criminal acts were charged to courts by the Police. Investigations into the remaining electoral offenses have reached advanced stages and as soon as they are concluded they will be similarly processed for prosecution in furtherance of efforts to sanitize our electoral space and discourage the resort to extra-legal means to attain political ends in future electoral engagements in the State.

“It must be highlighted that for our prompt efforts, the Lagos State Police Command has received commendations from the Inspector General of Police and local as well and international observers and other segments of the society.” the police chief said

CP Owohunwa praised the Lagos State Police Command for delivering what has been widely acclaimed as the most peaceful, secure, and credible electoral engagement in comparative terms, despite isolated challenges and threats from fake news purveyors, hate news mongers, political extremists, thugs, and ethnic chauvinists who manipulated social media to create tension and threaten peace and security within the wider polity. He commended the exceptional civility with which the peaceful electorates were policed and the professionalism with which localized and isolated security breaches were responded to without deploying lethal weapons and without causing or recording any citizens’ deaths during the 2023 General Elections in the State.

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