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Nigerian Police Defend invasion of Akwa Ibom House of Assembly

The Nigerian police on Wednesday repudiated criticisms of its role in the pandemonium that occurred at the House of Assembly of Akwa Ibom State in Uyo the state capital on Tuesday, saying contrary to the allegation of partisanship, it acted professionally.

Governor Udom Emmanuel of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP); the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr. Adams Oshiomhole; and PDP members of the state assembly had accused the state Command Commissioner of Police, Mr. Musa Kimo, of bias in the handling of the crisis and demanded his redeployment from the state.

But Kimo defended himself at a press briefing in Uyo and said his men acted professionally, adding that the situation could have been worse if not for the way he handled it.

Kimo said he had no power to stop any lawmaker from accessing the assembly complex to perform his official duties.

According to him, “For us, the police, we have no right, no directive to prevent Mr. A or B from accessing the House of Assembly. It is only the competent court of law that can direct that.

“Policemen, apart from the DPO of the House of Assembly and personnel, they are the ones in the assembly and no other policemen deployed there.

“But whenever there is violation or crisis, certainly we deploy men 500 meters away from the scene to be able to forestall and checkmate such crisis, and we have to ensure the lawmakers go about their duties without any form of molestation, intimidation or hindrance.

“How can we do that, it is when we are able to ensure that miscreants do not infiltrate the House of Assembly. We cannot successfully do that from the comfort of our offices. We have to be on the field. As at yesterday (Tuesday), that was what we did to ensure that hoodlums do not find their ways to perpetrate evil in the assembly.”

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