The Department of State Services (DSS) has called on the citizenry and residents in the country to be of good conduct for public peace and order during the yuletide.
The service pledged to collaborate with all stakeholders to maintain law and order across the country and urged community, religious and political leaders to preach peaceful coexistence, tolerance and unity as well as enlighten their members on safety measures during and after the season.
A statement signed by the Public Relations Officer, Department of State Services,
National Headquarters, Abuja, Dr. Peter Afunanya, said the advisory became necessary as criminal elements may want to capitalise on the festivities to wreak havoc or harm unsuspecting members of the public.
The statement also urged political actors, to while carrying out their campaigns, play the game according to the rules of engagement.
It also asked politicians to shun fake news, hate speech, violence and acts inimical to national security just as it cautioned players in the socio-economic sector to avoid manipulative tendencies that could result in undue price hikes, artificial scarcity of products/goods and situations that may lead to heightened tensions.
The DSS also asked the media and other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to be objective and patriotic in the discharge of their roles, saying that they should understand that the practice of their trades could be more result oriented in an atmosphere of peace.
It cautioned that as critical stakeholders in nation building and national security management, both media and NGOs need to consider Nigeria first before any other interests.
According to the statment, to sustain national stability, the service will continue to carryout its duties and responsibilities in line with global best practices as they affect human rights and rule of law despite what it called “calculated efforts by some interest groups” to create impression that persons arrested by the service are either not taken care of or denied access to their families and/or legal representatives.
It noted that the service has a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) on suspect handling which it considers promising that the general care of suspects will remain sacrosanct and a priority as can be attested to by those that had passed through its holding facilities.
The statement categoricallly emphasised that for every suspect under its detention, the service allows a family and/or legal representative, who fulfills all the processes and clearance procedures, access to such a suspect.
It reminded the public that the service does not carry out illegal arrests or undertake enforced disappearances of innocent persons just as it does not operate illegal detention camps adding that its operations and activities are rule-based and governed by transparent and accountable legal processes.
The DSS, further enjoined those opposed to its lawful position on issues to approach the court for redress.
The statement encouraged all to live in peace and good neighbourliness but should, be conscious of their environment.
It asked people to desist from false and deliberate narratives and actions that may incite the populace against itself or the government and reiterated its partnership with sister agencies to ensure adequate security before, during and after the yuletide and election seasons.
The statement advised residents to report any information of relevance to the appropriate security and law enforcement agencies.