Amid a tensed political environment in Kano State, the Independent National Electoral Commission has revealed why it is confident the February 25 Presidential and National Assembly elections will hold or go on smoothly as assured by its leadership.
According to INEC data, about 5,594,913 residents have collected their Personal Voters Card, and Kano comes second to Lagos State, in terms of states with highest PVCs for the polls.
In less than 24 hours to the polls, security agents have apprehended over 300 thugs in the state.
THE WHISTLER had observed on Thursday the supporters of the presidential candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party Rabiu Kwankwaso, wielding sticks and cutlasses in a show of solidarity (though with expressions of excitement).
The terrain is such that one has behave to be a supporter of a particular candidate whenever they arrive or are passing through an LGA in Kano state.
For instance, a tricyclist that conveyed THE WHISTLER correspondent out of a gridlock and a huge assemblage of NNPP supporters at Kwanar Dangora, Kiru Local Government Area in the state, wore a red cap( signifying the Kwankwasiya ideology of Kwankwaso) and played a promo song for NNPP while in the area.
But he put it off as soon as he drove past the area where Kwankwaso’s rally took place, telling our correspondent that such alignment was a good strategy for pleasing supporters of politicians in the state.
Meanwhile, security forces like the operatives of the Nigeria Police Force are on ground in different places in the metropolis.
THE WHISTLER observed on Friday, a combined team of Fire Service, Nigerian Army, Police, Department of States Services surrounding INEC main office in the state capital situated opposite Hajj Camp.
Most of the security operatives particularly the police, are spotted with INEC accreditation tags signifying they have been deployed to secure the place during and after the polls.
The combined team of security operatives within or outside the INEC premises, numbering over 50, had guns.
Two military armoured tanks and police patrol vans were positioned around the entrance.
Following the development, THE WHISTLER was at the office of the State PRO, INEC, Kano state, Adam A. Malud , to ascertain its preparedness under the tensed situation.
“Yes, exactly. All the sensitive and non-sensitive materials are in the local governments. We are good to go,” he replied.
Malud explained that the political situation and desperation in Kano was expected due to its obvious capacity to swing massive votes for candidates.
“Kano is the most peaceful state but you know Kano is a stronghold for political parties. So you here and there, you can hear the rustling between them. But Kano is the most peaceful place in terms of security and whatever.
“You know, the kind of politics in Kano is not like any other state, but we are used to it,” he maintained.
But he assured that the security operatives deployed to the state and the LGAs would provide security and maintain law and order during and after the polls.
“They have already deployed security agencies, and today, they are going to barricade everywhere,” he said.