A Local Government office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Ohafia in Abia state was Sunday night set ablaze by hoodlums.
Important electoral materials as well as office equipment went up in flames, but among the guards and other staff of the electoral body present, there were no casualties.
This was disclosed on Monday by the INEC National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Barr. Festus Okoye.
According to him, the Resident Electoral Commissioner for the State, Dr. Joseph Iloh had reported that INEC’s recently renovated office in the local government was set ablaze on Sunday night.
“There are no casualties on the part of our staff on guard duty but the building was virtually destroyed. Apart from furniture items, all electoral materials and office equipment were destroyed”, he stated.
The fire in its Abia office isn’t the only incident in recent times, as INEC’s office in Essien Udim Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State had also been attacked last week.
Okoye added: “The latest incident in Abia State is one too many. This is not the first attack on the Commission’s facilities in the State in recent times. Five months ago on 13th December 2020, the INEC LGA office in Aba South was completely burnt down while that of Arochukwu LGA was vandalised and ransacked in October 2020.
“These facilities are national assets, which must be protected. Accordingly, the Commission is convening an emergency meeting of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) next week to discuss this disturbing trend.
“Meanwhile, the Commission wishes to reassure Nigerians that all activities in relation to the ongoing expansion of voter access to Polling Units and preparations for the resumption of CVR as well as all scheduled elections will proceed as planned.”
Ripples Nigeria had earlier reported how INEC was lamenting the recent attacks on its facilities across the country, saying if unchecked, it may affect the success of future polls.