Ebonyi State government has said that the order banning political rallies from holding in public schools in the state, does not exempt the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
The ban which took effect on November 1 2022, had elicited diverse reactions from the public with some political stakeholders wondering if the APC would be affected by its provisions.
Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Uchenna Orji, dismissed such apprehensions on Saturday at Abakaliki, the state capital when he spoke with newsmen. He said all political parties were bound by the provisions of the order designed to protect pupils, students and staff that use the schools.
“The apprehensions should be allayed because even in civilised societies, there are conditions attached to political parties holding rallies in public facilities.
“All political parties, including the ruling APC, must secure approval from relevant authorities to use the schools and other public facilities,’’ he said.
The commissioner added that securing the lives and property of the people was paramount to the government and should override all personal interests.
“Holding political rallies in schools ordinarily puts the security of pupils and students at risk because they are vulnerable. We have security reports that gunmen may attack schools during campaigns, so the order was a proactive step to forestall such incidents.
“The media should assist the government in propagating the ideals of the order as insecurity is a menace affecting everyone,’’ the commissioner said.
Orji reiterated that the ₦5 million required of political parties to campaign on school premises was refundable as the overall interest was to protect the people.