Nigerian army vows to deal with election violence

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said that security agencies had been given the go-ahead to "deal ruthlessly" with ballot snatchers.

Nigerian Army on Wednesday said it will deal decisively with anyone planning to disrupt the rescheduled presidential and national assembly elections, no matter how highly placed.

Aminu Iliyasu, spokesperson for the army in southern oil-rich state of Rivers, gave the warning in a statement sent to Xinhua in Lagos, Nigeria's economic hub.

Iliyasu said the army had uncovered credible intelligence of an unholy plan by some political actors within its area of responsibility (AOR) to arm and sponsor miscreants.

The Army Division includes Rivers, Delta, Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom states.  Iliyasu added that intelligence indicated that the political actors planned to use military-like fatigue dress for deception to cause pandemonium at polling stations for their political gain.

He said efforts were ongoing to track the source of the weapons and agents involved, warning that anyone found culpable would be dealt with in accordance with the law.

Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said Monday in Abuja, the nation's capital, that security agencies had been given the go-ahead to "deal ruthlessly" with ballot snatchers.

The president warned that anyone who engages in ballot box snatching during the rescheduled elections does so "at his own personal expense."

Mahmood Yakubu, chairman of Nigeria's electoral body, on Saturday announced the postponement of the elections a few hours before its commencement.

The presidential and national assembly as well as the governorship and state houses of assembly elections were initially slated for Feb. 16 and March 2.

Xinhua

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