General Abdulrahman Dambazau, a former chief of the army staff and minister of the interior, has sounded the alarm about the threat that insecurity poses to the general election of 2023.
In his presentation, “2023 Politics: National Security and Nigeria’s Stability,” delivered on Tuesday, August 15, at the Blueprint Newspapers Annual Public Lecture in Abuja, Dambazau predicted that terrorists would continue to target civilians and other soft targets, which would cause IEC officials to worry.
“Would insecurity affect the 2023 elections? Surely it would, because some of the community would still be displaced and the terrorists would likely continue attacks on soft targets, INEC officials and ad-hoc staff would be highly apprehensive despite the assurance by the government to protect them. Access to polling units in border communities may pose some difficulties. This is a more reason adequate security must be provided.
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“As we also prepare for the 2023 elections, we should also think of the possibility of an attack on the election processes by violent groups. The security threats against the 2023 elections are not limited to the activities of terror groups in the North but also the proscribed IPOB in the South East.
“The group had earlier threatened that there would be no election in the region in 2023 and insisted that all they want is to secede from Nigeria. They must not be allowed to carry out such a threat.”
Dambazau added that there is no cohesion among the various security services and asked for an immediate reform in the security industry.
“There’s a need for reforms and the reason they are necessary is that there appears to be no synergy among the security operatives in terms of cooperation, coordination and collaboration while carrying out their activities.
“Rather, they operate in silos, they hoard information and are reluctant to share intelligence as if they are in competition. Also, there is poor security governance, making accountability and transparency almost impossible and there is duplication of efforts leading to wastage of resources.”