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Mass Rally: Police Beef Up Security

Posted by By Mike Oduniyi, Chris Nwachukwu, Gboyega Akinsanmi, Eugene Agha in Lagos, Juliana Taiwo in Abuja on 2005/09/14 | Views: 331 |

Mass Rally: Police Beef Up Security

Acting Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr. Sunday Ehindero, yesterday directed all Assistant Inspector-Generals of Police, Commissioners of Police and Area Commanders to beef up security in their respective jurisdictions ahead of the nation-wide mass rallies scheduled to kick off in Lagos today.

* EU countries move to reduce fuel prices

Acting Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr. Sunday Ehindero, yesterday directed all Assistant Inspector-Generals of Police, Commissioners of Police and Area Commanders to beef up security in their respective jurisdictions ahead of the nation-wide mass rallies scheduled to kick off in Lagos today.

But, unlike the Nigerian government that had raised domestic fuel prices by 30 percent in  response to galloping crude oil prices in the international market, governments across Europe are taking actions to reduce fuel prices in their respective countries to stave off sporadic protests.

The Nigerian Police in signals to Zonal Commanders and State Commissioners of Police urged all police formations to ensure that key public installations, particularly those belonging to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), and Nigeria Power Holding Company, formerly Nigeria Electric Power Authority (NEPA) were not tampered with by hoodlums.

The signal also directed that armed mobile policemen be placed on 24-hour guard duty around these key installations, while efforts should be made to educate police officers on how to deal with members of the public during the period.

Ehindero who authored the signal assured the public of safety and security of their lives and properties. He added that police were prepared to handle the rally in a way that human rights of citizens will not be abused.

THISDAY checks also revealed that police would not antagonise any union, group or civil society organisations provided that  constitutional provisions are duly observed during the rally.

The IGP urged the leadership of NLC and civil society organisations to handle the rally with maturity and within the ambit of constitutional provisions so that public peace would not be disrupted.

Lagos State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Bode Ojajuni, told THISDAY that the State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Adewole Ajakaiye, has directed all Area Commanders and Divisional Police Officers (DPO) to educate their men on how to handle the rally without abuse of human rights, Ojajuni, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), said "the Command will not tolerate any act that causes a breach of law and constitution in the state. Those who want to go with the rally should do so within the confines of the law.

He said members of the public should not use the rally to foment trouble in the state and that the arms of the law will descend heavily on any individual found violating constitutional provisions.

According to Ojajuni, members of the public should go about their lawful duties as the Command will ensure that there is adequate security of lives and properties before, during and after the mass rally.

Yesterday, the police for the second time in 48 hours met with organised labour to work out modalities for a hitch free rally.

But National chairman, Labour and Civil Society Coalition (LASCO), Dr Beko Ransome Kuti, alleged yesterday that two activists involved in the mobilisation were arrested at Isolo on their way to Ikeja and whisked off to unknown destination.

He, however, said LASCO was not  intimidated by alleged police interest in the planned rally. He said the rally would go ahead as planned.
The police team led by the Deputy Commissioner of Police, John Haruna arrived NLC Lagos sub-secretariat at about midday to meet with the planning committee of the rally headed by Didi Adodo.

In Abuja, the Federal Government yesterday called on Nigerian youths to back  its various reforms programmes, particularly the fuel price adjustments.

Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Youth Development and Special Duties, Col. Musa Mohammed (rtd) at the interactive session with leaders of youth organisations, said the meeting was to dialogue on the smooth implementation of government economic reform programmes.

He said price of petroleum products is the pivot on which the cost of other goods and services revolve. He said it is therefore not surprising that any attempt by government to appropriately fix price of petroleum products in pursuit of the policy on deregulation of the down-stream sector is usually met with protest.

Also, Minister of Labour and Productivity, Dr. Hassan Lawal, in his remark, commended the youth for taking to dialogue rather than  taking to the streets as it was in the past.

Meanwhile, governments across Europe have embarked on plans to reduce fuel prices amid sporadic protests that have erupted over rising petrol prices. 
France is to offer fuel tax rebates to farmers while President Jacques Chirac has called on petrol retailers to make meaningful cuts to pump prices. The French government announced a package of measures on Tuesday designed to ease the situation for farmers.

The farmers will be offered tax breaks and refunds on fuel worth about 30 million euros or $36.6 million.

"The rise in fuel prices penalises farms, which cannot always pass the cost on," Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin told a meeting of farmers in Rennes.  "We must help them," he added.

Retailers have cut prices in Austria after the government threatened a one-off tax on their profits.  Belgium, Poland and Hungary have also announced measures to cushion the impact of rising prices on consumers.
BP and Total announced price cuts last week but consumers and motoring groups said they have not gone far enough.


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Comments (6)

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Sunday Mbe(Kaduna, Kaduna, Nigeria)says...


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