In preparation for the general election in 2023, the Department of State Services has started educating its officers in the field of public relations.
The DSS organized a four-day Strategic Workshop for its State Directors of Security and Heads of Institutions from January 18 to 21, 2023, at its National Headquarters in Abuja, according to Dr. Peter Afunanya, the agency’s spokesperson.
He said that the workshop was a component of the Service’s general election preparations.
During the exercise, the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, presented a keynote address on the preparation of the Commission towards the election. He assured the Service of the commission’s determination to deliver a free, fair and credible election.
“Also, the commission, through its Director of Legal, Mrs Oluwatoyin Babalola, educated participants on the Electoral Act 2022 and its implications for security agencies. The Service reviewed the security situation in the country and assured INEC of its support which is in line with the President’s pronouncement to the world to bequeath a free and fair election.
“As part of related training and courses outlined for personnel for the period, a capacity building seminar in Public Relations was declared open by the DGSS today, January 23, 2023 for mid-level officers drawn from the State Commands. Resource persons from the media, public relations practice and the academia are participating in the seminar,” the statement by the spokesperson on Monday read.
Afunanya added that the DG, DSS, Alhaji Yusuf Bichi, used the occasions to reiterate the need for professionalism and neutrality of personnel in the discharge of the Service’s mandate before, during and after the general election.
“Of note was that at the end of the strategic workshop, participants pledged to work in collaboration with sister agencies, INEC and all relevant stakeholders to ensure that peaceful elections are conducted across the country.
“In a related development, the DSS on January 16, 2023, commenced a two-week Joint Service training programme at the National Institute for Security Studies, Abuja. Participants are drawn from the country’s Armed Forces, Police and other law enforcement and response agencies. The course was initiated by the Service to strengthen interagency relations in view of their separate and combined roles in the forthcoming elections. The Joint Service Course is designed to promote interagency collaboration and efficiency during the elections,” he added.