The mandate of the Electoral Offences Desk Officers includes the collation and investigation of all electoral offences/complaints from members of the public or any quarters.
The Nigeria Police Force has arrested 24 suspected political thugs at Minki Suites, along Keffi-Akwanga Road, Nasarawa State.
This comes as the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Usman Baba, approved the establishment of the Electoral Offences Desk at the Force Criminal Investigations Department (FCID), Force Headquarters, Abuja, and in all the State Commands with the Commissioner of Police (FCID), and Assistant Commissioner of Police (SCID) as the Desk Officers respectively.
A statement by the Force Public Relations Officer, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, disclosed that the mandate of the Electoral Offences Desk Officers includes the collation and investigation of all electoral offences/complaints from members of the public or any quarters, with a view to determining culpability in line with the amended Electoral Act 2022, and proffering charges before Courts of competent jurisdiction for necessary legal action.
Adejobi stated that the activities of the desk commenced immediately with some isolated cases recorded during the pre-election activities such as screening, conventions, primaries, among others.
The Force spokesman noted that it was based on this mandate that its operatives attached to the Keffi Area Command of the Nasarawa State Command, acting on credible and actionable intelligence the 24 political thugs were arrested.
The statement was titled: "2023 Credible Elections: IGP Establishes electoral offences desks across the nation, assigns desk officers".
Shedding light on the arrest of the political thugs, Adejobi further disclosed that they were suspected to be loyal to an aspirant in the Nasarawa West Senatorial primaries, who brought them into the hotel in a convoy of seven private vehicles.
He said, "Items recovered from the arrested suspects include; eight (8) pump action guns, two (2) locally made revolver guns, thirty-seven (37) rounds of live cartridges, four (4) bulletproof vests, twenty-seven (27) mobile phones, two (2) pairs of vigilante uniforms, five (5) cutlasses, ten (10) assorted knives, criminal charms, and other incriminating objects.
"Preliminary investigations reveal that the suspects, who are thugs for hire, carry out their heinous acts under the guise of being members of the Vigilante Group of Nigeria (VGN).
"The Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba has ordered the immediate transfer of the case to the Electoral Offences Desk at the Force Criminal Investigation Department (FCID) and the immediate arrest of the concerned aspirant for necessary investigative actions.
"The IGP reiterates the commitment of the Force to stamping out threats to peaceful and credible elections at all levels, even as he vows to deal decisively with anyone caught engaging in political thuggery."