The Idemili South Local Government Area Office of the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) in Anambra State has been set on fire by unknown gunmen.
A statement signed by INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee, Festis Okoye says “The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) for Anambra State, Dr. Queen Elizabeth Agwu, reported that our office in Idemili South Local Government Area (LGA) was attacked and set ablaze by unknown gunmen. The incident occurred in the early hours of Wednesday 1st February 2023”.
According to him, the building was substantially damaged. All furniture and other items were destroyed, including non-sensitive materials recently delivered in readiness for the 2023 General Election.
Among the items reported to have been lost to the inferno are 729 ballot boxes, 243 voting cubicles, 256 election bags, 11 megaphones, 1 electric power generator and large quantities of indelible ink and liquid gum.
INEC however disclosed that uncollected Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVCs) kept in the fireproof cabinet were not affected by the inferno, neither were sensitive materials, as they are yet to be delivered to the LGA office.
“The destruction appears to have been coordinated as the Nnobi Police Station in the LGA was similarly attacked.
Despite this despicable incident, the Commission wishes to reassure the people of Idemili South LGA that contingency arrangement will be made to replace the materials and the Presidential and National Assembly elections will proceed on 25th February 2023 as scheduled, to be followed two weeks later by the State House of Assembly election”, the commission said.