Kwara State Police Command has read riot acts to suspected persons who destroyed billboards, banners and posters of political candidates in and around Ilorin metropolis.
In a statement by the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Ajayi Okasanmi, in Ilorin on Thursday, he described the act as unacceptable, adding that the command had set in motion machinery to identify and apprehend perpetrators of the dastardly acts to face the full wrath of the law.
“Consequently, Area Commanders, Divisional Police Officers, officers and men of the Command have been given the marching orders to go all out to arrest anybody covertly or overtly connected to this unlawful acts, as the full weight of the law will be made to fall heavily on anybody arrested for destroying billboards, banners, posters of opposing political party candidates, please,” he said.
In the same vein, Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara state has described as unfortunate and unacceptable, the vandalization of billboards belonging to political parties and their candidates in the state by unknown persons.
Governor Ahmed, in a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Communication, Dr Muyideen Akorede, denounced the action and warned political parties, their candidates and supporters to desist from such actions in the interest of peace and harmonious coexistence that Kwara State is renowned for.
Ahmed urged political parties and their candidates to campaign for votes in the forthcoming general elections on the basis on their ideas and plans for the electorate rather than deploying force, violent rhetoric or otherwise taking the law into their hands.
The governor said only the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria(APCON) and the Kwara State Signage and Advertising Agency (KWASAA) are authorized by law to either approve or remove outdoor advertising for non-compliance with existing regulations.
He, therefore, stressed that the Police and other law enforcement agencies in the state have been advised to arrest and prosecute anyone either violating the law on outdoor advertising or illegally destroying billboards.
Ahmed reiterated his call on the people of Kwara State to exercise their franchise freely without fear or favour in the 2019 elections and desist from any actions capable of creating crises, violence or otherwise disrupting the polls.
The governor said it is the responsibility of all concerned to ensure that Kwara State maintains its reputation for rancour-free campaigns and elections.
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