Barely three months to the 2023 general elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has decried the fire attack on the commission’s local government office in Ogun State which destroyed critical materials.
The commission’s office in Abeokuta was gutted by fire in the early hours of Thursday.
It reported that some hoodlums numbering about eight were said to have scaled the perimeter fence, jumped into the premises and set the INEC building on fire from the rear side.
However, the electoral umpire in an official statement in reaction to the fire attack, said over 65,000 uncollected PVCs were destroyed in the fire.
In the statement signed by INEC’s Commissioner for information and voter education, Festus Okoye, the commission said that all moveable assets including 904 ballot boxes, 29 voting cubicles, 30 megaphones, 57 election bags, 8 electric power generators and 65,699 uncollected permanent voters cards (PVCs) were destroyed.
The statement read, “The resident electoral commissioner (REC) for Ogun State, Dr. Niyi Ijalaiye, reported that our office in Abeokuta South local government area was attacked and set ablaze.
“The incident occurred around 1.15am when some unidentified persons overpowered the security personnel on duty and set the entire building ablaze.”
Okoye said the one of the commission’s offices in Osun was also attacked and set ablaze, and that an emergency security meeting had been called to get to the bottom of the electoral threats.
He said “Similarly, the resident electoral commissioner for Osun state, Dr. Mutiu Agboke, reported that our office in Ede South local government area was attacked and set ablaze.
“The incident occurred in the early hours of this morning when some unidentified persons attacked the building and set a portion of it ablaze.
“Fortunately, the damage to our Ede South local government (office) was limited to a section of the building and only some furniture items were destroyed.