A security expert and public affairs analyst, Brig-Gen. Ayo Ojo (retd.), has advised the Independent National Electoral Commission and the Federal Government to prepare for a violent surprise by Boko Haram ahead of the October 11 Adamawa State governorship by-election.
He said the election was a constitutional requirement which could not be ignored because of the ongoing violent attacks on the state by the terrorists.
Ojo, a member of the Nigerian Institute for Industrial Security, therefore, called on INEC and federal government to take adequate measures to forestall the loss of lives and property of the electorate in the state.
He said, “There is a constitutional provision for the time frame within which there must be an election to fill the governorship seat after an impeachment. The election should, therefore, go ahead.
“However, to avoid any violent surprise by Boko Haram, adequate and tight security should be put in place”.
The retired Army officer also called on the Presidency and the Defence Headquarters to improve on their public relations strategy, especially as it affects the military’s current campaign against the Boko Haram sect.
He pointed out that if the government kept information away from the public, they might end up being fed with false information from other sources.
According to Ojo, it is better for citizens to hear news, either good or bad, from their own government rather than untrusted sources.
He said, “In terms of improving communication by the Presidency and the DHQ, I will suggest that they should always ensure that Nigerians are carried along in whatever is going on. Otherwise, the citizens might be forced to go out and find out things by themselves.
“In view of the social media networks, much harm could be done if the citizens are kept in the dark. Moreover, enemies of Nigeria could easily step in to fill the gap to dish out falsehood. It is, therefore, very important to keep citizens well informed. It is always comforting to hear from the government”.