The Nigeria Police Force has dismissed reports that there is a plot to use the Oro festival in some communities in Lagos State to scare and intimidate voters.
Recall that the traditional ruler of the Ikate-Elegushi Kingdom in Lagos, Oba Saheed Ademola, had announced that there will be Oro rites in the kingdom in Eti-Osa.
However, the announcement triggered reactions from Nigerians most of whom alleged that it was a plot to disenfranchise some voters in the state.
But the monarch, in a statement by his spokesman, Temitope Oyefeso, said the restriction of movement for the Oro rites is from midnight to morning on Wednesday to Saturday, adding that election day is not included.
Reacting to the issue during an appearance on Channles TV on Friday, Force Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, confirmed that the festival ended on Friday.
Adejobi asked voters in the state to come out and exercise their civic responsibilities, stressing that there is no threat to the governorship and state assembly elections.
“When the news went viral that there will be Oro between Wednesday and Thursday, the major city that is concerned is Ikate land where we have Kabiyesi Oba Elegushi and I personally put a call to Kabiyesi to find out what is the situation.
“I am a Yoruba man, and I know what it is when they say they will have Oro cult or Oro festival. I know definitely many people will not be allowed to move particularly women and he clarified and said the Oro festival will end yesterday (Friday).
So, this means it’s not a threat to the electoral process in any way because the election is on Saturday.
“I think if the Oro is over today (Friday), that settles it. So, according to the information I have from Lagos State, the Oro ends today Friday and the election is tomorrow. So, I don’t think it is a threat to the electoral process in any way.”
Adejobi said he is not aware that there are other communities in the state planning on doing the Oro festival on election day and as such, there is nothing to worry about.
He, however, said that if some people insist on going on with such activity on election day, the police will also deal with the situation.