The CLEEN foundation in its third security threat assessment ahead of the election wants key players including security agencies, INEC, and political parties to add the issue of conflict management in their plans.
As the 2015 general elections draw near, political activities are now beginning to heat up but the signs are not so good according to the CLEEN foundation. The foundation says it has identified a number of factors which if not addressed, are likely to have great consequences on not just the outcome of the elections but on the future of Nigeria. They include recurring communal clashes, intra and inter party tension, succession battles, defection as well as zoning arrangements among others.
Chinedu Nwaugwu, senior programme officer, CLEEN foundation says, “The defection and counter defection between the two major parties have generated huge political tensions and as political activities pick up within the year, we may experience more violent engagements.”
These security threats assessment report, which covers the month of January to March 2014, also identified violence prone areas, categorized according to perceived level of threat. The states include, Nasarawa, Plateau, Benue, Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Taraba, Kaduna, Zamfara, Rivers, Ebonyi, Enugu, Imo, Ekiti and Osun states.
The police whose roles will be crucial in forestalling violence was also not left out
According to the Executive Director, CLEEN foundation, Kemi Okenyyodo, “What was the rationale behind reducing the overall budget of the Nigeria Police Force by 30% in a year preparatory to elections? What was the thinking of the National Assembly at the time they took this decision? These are issues that need to be addressed concretely because it seems the police are specifically set up to fail.”
The DIG training and research, Abdulrahman Akano says, adequate arrangement has to be made for those who are thrown out there to rake violence.
In its recommendations, the CLEEN foundation wants the culture of impunity reversed by prosecuting perpetrators. The foundation also wants public safety mechanism strengthened across the country in order to ease fears over the likelihood of violence before, during and after the elections.