Elections: Using dogs at voting places is illegal and unacceptable -Police

The Police issued a warning to Nigerians on Tuesday against bringing pets, especially dogs, to polling places on election day, claiming that doing so is against the terms of the Election Act of 2022, as amended.

This was in response to allegations that certain voters and groups intended to cast their ballots on Saturday while being accompanied by their dogs as a means of defense against political thugs and ballot box snatchers.

This was revealed in a statement that our correspondent was able to receive from the Force Public Relations Officer, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi.

Adejobi pointed out that the Electoral Act of 2022’s Section 126 (1) explicitly outlines the behaviors that constitute electoral breaches and are penalized by law, and paragraph (f) specifically specifies the possession of firearms used to frighten voters and election officials.

Dogs could be considered aggressive weapons, he argued, because their owners or handlers can use them to intimidate, harass, assault, and inflict physical injury on people.

“The Federal Republic of Nigeria’s 1958 CAP 55 Statutes, as domesticated in several states, and other criminal laws in Nigeria are trite.

“The thoughts and plans that some voters, electors, and groups have to go to the polls with their pets are inappropriate, discouraged, and will continue to be an electoral infringement because it will lead to harassment and intimidation.

“The NPF, therefore, urges people who intend to show their pets, in particular dogs, for any reason at the voting places to stop as such conduct constitutes a violation of the Election Act 2022, as amended, and other extant laws,” it says.

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