Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has assured Nigerians it will recover from the recent attacks on its facilities.
Speaking at the induction retreat for resident electoral commissioners held in Lagos on Wednesday, INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, said, “Our responsibility is to conduct elections. I want to assure Nigerians that we will recover from these attacks.
“The lost materials will be replaced but there is a limit to our ability to keep replacing lost or damaged items in just 86 days to the general elections.”
Two attacks on INEC local government facilities in Ogun and Osun were carried out within three weeks. Though INEC said its Ebonyi office was also attacked on Sunday, police said the facility was destroyed by fire.
The commission had lamented the spate of attacks on its offices two weeks ago, putting the total number of INEC offices attacked by hoodlums at 50. The attacks were reported in 21 different states.
Yakubu stated that the commission will work closely with security agencies and traditional rulers to prevent a recurrence of these attacks.
The INEC chairman demanded that the perpetrators be apprehended and prosecuted “so that vandals and arsonists do not feel that their behavior is acceptable in our country.”
“Five local government offices of the commission were attacked by yet unknown persons. Buildings are being destroyed, critical facilities lost,” he added.
“These facilities include a total of 1,992 ballot boxes, 399 voting cubicles and 22 electric-powered generators as well as thousands of uncollected PVCs. These attacks must stop and the perpetrators apprehended and prosecuted.”