A Non-Governmental Organisation, CLEEN Foundation, has identified 12 states that could be placed under close security watch for possible outbreak of violence before, during and after the 2015 general election.
The states, according to the group, are Nasarawa, Plateau, Benue, Borno, Yobe, Adamawa and Taraba. Others are Kaduna, Kano, Sokoto, Rivers and Delta.
The foundation said it used various parametres to designate the states as violence-prone, including history of violence, communal or religious conflict, terrorism or militancy, state of emergency, bid for second term by the governors and zoning arrangement by political parties.
The Programme Officer of the foundation, Chinedu Nwagwu, who addressed a press conference in Abuja yesterday, explained that the crisis in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the recent defection of five governors to the All Progressives Congress (APC) might escalate into violent political conflagration in 2015 if not properly managed.
According to him, the defection by the governors could pose a major security concern because the APC may not be elastic enough to accommodate the mutual distrust, political contentions and the posturing of the contending forces and other varied groups and interests now in the party.
"With this new development in APC, there is definitely going to be a huge contention over control of the party, leadership and candidates, some of the contentions could spiral into violence," Nwagwu said.
The foundation noted that vote rigging would majorly trigger violence during the presidential election, adding that it was perceived that vote rigging led to the 2011 post-election violence.
Nwagwu observed that the level of awareness among citizens was high now and so would be the drive for mandate protection which could precipitate violence if attempts were made to manipulate the election.
He therefore called for inter-agency cooperation among security agencies and strengthening of intelligence-sharing and early response to identified threats.