By Nimot Adetola Sulaimon
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) office in Akwa Ibom has been set ablaze by unknown hoodlums.
According to the statement released on Twitter, the office at Essien Udim Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom was found burning in the early hours of Sunday, May 2.
The statement revealed that Barr. Mike Igini, the resident electoral commissioner of the state reported the incident.
”Our security guard on duty escaped unhurt but the destruction to the building and properties therein was extensive. Items destroyed include 345 ballot boxes, 135 voting cubicles, megaphones, water tanks and office furniture.
“The police, which has also been battling with attacks on its facilities and personnel in the area, is aware of the incident and has commenced an investigation.
INEC Local Government Office in Akwa Ibom Set Ablaze pic.twitter.com/33Ma7QgRbT
— INEC Nigeria (@inecnigeria) May 2, 2021
“It will be recalled that on the eve of the 2019 General Election, our newly constructed prototype LGA office in Ibesikpo Asutan was burnt down while two more offices in Mkpat Enin and Eastern Obolo LGAS were bombed.
“The recent attack on our facility after we have just concluded the inventory of electoral materials nationwide in readiness for the 2023 General Election is worrisome.
”If unchecked, these attacks may constitute a setback on the Commission’s preparations, including the ongoing conversion of Voting Points to Polling Units, the forthcoming Continuous Registration of Voters (CVR) exercise and the conduct of polls.
“Nevertheless, the Commission wishes to assure Nigerians that we will leave no stone unturned to recover from the incident in Akwa Ibom State as we continue to prepare for all electoral activities”, the statement read.