Soldiers’ participation in democratic elections, alien – Prof. Ango

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The Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has said that the participation of soldiers in supervising elections is, totally, alien to any democracy and similar to bringing the military into politics.
“Military presence in elections is totally alien, it connotes violence and war, this is why they should be kept away from this kind of civil exercise, particularly politics”, the forum said through its spokesman, Professor Ango Abdullahi, at a press conference in Bauchi.
NEF recalled, over the weekend, that, “already, there is a court decision that military should be kept out of the 2015 elections.
“Of course, those who want to use the military for rigging the elections have appealed against the decision of the court, we are aware of this, but, there is no reason for military involvement, since elections are not war situations for the military to appear with guns”, the forum added.
Abdullahi also noted that in some developed democratic countries, the police appear at polling venues without guns or other forms of weapons. “So we have always believed that this is a civil event and it should be supervised by civilian security forces that are close to the people and this is the Police.
“The Police should be enough to supervise elections, they can be supported by other security personnel, the Civil Defense Corps, Customs, Immigration, they all wear uniforms, but military presence during democratic elections is, totally, alien”.
Abdullahi reiterated that unless security situations were really out of control, the military would never be called in to deal with civil matters, such as democratic elections.

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