The Nigerian Army on Friday extended its “Show of Force Exercise” to six violence-prone local government areas in Sokoto State preparatory to the Saturday supplementary elections in the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the affected local government areas are Raba, Kebbe, Gada, Goronyo, Sabon Birni and Isa.
Addressing the motorcade before taking off from Sokoto, Maj.-Gen. Hakeem Otiki, General Officer Commanding (GOC), 8 Division, Nigerian Army, said the exercise was to arouse public attention to the presence of the military.
Otiki explained that the exercise was not meant to intimidate the public, but to express army readiness to curtail any form of public disturbance.
He said further that the exercise would also serve as warning to hoodlums and other disgruntled elements that might plan or intend to disrupt the upcoming supplementary elections.
The GOC added that similar exercise was conducted for hours in Sokoto metropolis on Thursday and urged the people to cooperate with law enforcement agencies in ensuring peaceful coexistence in the country.
He, however, cautioned all violators of peace to be wary of the repercussion, stressing that the military were always ready to secure lives and safeguard the nation’s territorial integrity.
‘’I urge you to feel free and to come out on that day to exercise your civic responsibility at the selected places within the periods.
NAN reports that the exercise was conducted in partnership with the Nigerian Air Force, Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Department of State Security Service (DSS), Nigerian Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC).
Okiti urged the officers to be disciplined, adding that discipline was the bedrock of achieving success in all aspects of life.