Kayode Egbetokun is the Commissioner of Police in Kwara State, he assumed office on 10th of February 2019, in this Interview with WESTERNPOST Kwara State Correspondent, Mosunmola Ayobami, he bares his mind on security issues concerning the peaceful polls witnessed in Kwara State, Excerpt.
What is your assessment on Security during the just concluded polls in Kwara?
We did all we needed to do to guarantee success of that process and God crown our effort with a huge success, we covered all the polling unit, our men were on the road we strictly enforced the vehicular movement and our men were vigilant, before we deployed them they were trained on election security, we didn’t do it alone, it is not only the police that did it, we got support of all the sisters agencies in Kwara state, the Road Safety, Immigration, Customs contributed, the Prison Service, the Civil Defence deployed massively and of course the Military so with support from all the sisters Security services we were able to cover the election,we didn’t give any breeding space for thugs.
An opposition Party alleged heavy Security agents deployment in their polling units during the polls, how true is this?
All this allegation is not something that is not visible if they are alleging Militarization at their polling unit as a journalist you have seen it on election day, you went round and you saw how we deployed our men so if we concentrated our deployment on a certain area we may have a reason for doing that maybe troubled area we have to deployed differently than other places that had no threat at all, if you went round on the day of election you will see that we didn’t even have enough men, there is no polling unit that had more than three police men or three security personnel, that is what the Independent National Electoral commission (INEC) said we should do, so if you see three police men at a polling unit and somebody is complaining of heavy Security deployment you will know that the person complaining is looking for excuse for whatever he has not done right, is normal in this part of the world that when people failed in an election they must blame it on somebody or something I think that is what is happening.
Prior to your deployment, it was said that you will be coming to Kwara state to work for All Progressive Congress led government,what is your take on this?
From my first day in office I kept on assuring people that am committed to fairness and justice and that exactly is what have been doing since I assumed duty here.
In your few weeks of working in Kwara state, what challenges would you say you battle with?
The major challenge I met on ground here is the challenge of fake news, fake news has become an industry in this place I realized that people even make living out of fake news, if you know the number of false alarm we responded to,every day, hour,we continue to get alarm and we are responding to them and we find out that they were all false, what about the one they will circulate on social media, so we wasted so much energy on that, false alarm is a my major challenge.
How best do you think electoral violence could be tackle in Nigeria?
The states are different, the strategy used which will work in Kwara state may not work in Lagos the one that works in Lagos may not work in Borno state, so different Commissioners of Police will come up with different strategies to stem down the tide of violence in their states.
Crime wise how will you rate Kwara state?
If you want me to compare Kwara with Lagos I will say Kwara is peaceful,I think Kwara is peaceful generally.
What would you like to be remembered for as a police officer?
I would like to be remembered as a straight forward person,committed to fairness and justice.
If you were not a Police officer, what would you have been?
I would have been a Police officer, if I come back to this world I still want to be a Police officer.
What advice do you have for Kwara residents?
They should remain peaceful and obey the law.