Usman Baba, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), has vowed that governors will no longer be allowed to prevent opposition political parties from holding rallies in their states.
The IGP spoke on Wednesday at the 2022 political parties summit in Abuja.
Represented by Dandaura Mustapha, deputy inspector-general of police (DIG) operations, the IGP said state commissioners have been directed to ensure that all parties are given an opportunity to campaign.
Baba said while some governors should be commended for allowing opposition parties to hold their activities freely, there are complaints about others.
“Unfortunately, some of the governors are not helping matters. They have not laid the foundation to give other political parties access to their campaign avenues,” he said.
“Some try to manipulate the campaigns. Some even sponsor thugs to pursue the opposition, remove their billboards, remove their posters and destroy their offices. We are aware and we have full reports.
“Based on this, the IG has categorically directed all commissioners of police that on no account should any serving or sitting governor stop other political parties from conducting their campaigns in their nooks and crannies of their states.
“This instruction was very clear both in writing and verbally.
“The commissioners of police have been directed to arrest all the hoodlums no matter where they belong to, whoever is sponsoring them, we will arrest them, charge them to court, that is a clear instruction.”
The IGP said any police commissioner who does not obey the order would be redeployed.