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2023: INEC panics, summons RECs, stakeholders over arson

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has expressed worries over the continued attacks of its facilities in some parts of the country.

 

The electoral body said the burning of its facilities could affect the 2023 elections and the long term plan for proper elections. INEC said it will hold two important meetings this week on the spate of attack on its facilities in some parts of the country.

 

The first meeting, which holds on Wednesday, is with the 37 Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) while the second will be with Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES), which will focus on how to secure the commission’s offices nationwide. INEC National Commissioner, Festus Okoye, who announced the meetings in a statement said: “The destruction of the commission’s physical infrastructure and electoral facilities calls for an immediate review of the measures necessary to secure INEC’s assets across the states.”

 

Sunday Telegraph reports that the commission has suffered attacks on its facilities in Kano, Akwa Ibom, Abia and Enugu states within a space of one month. These attacks had extensive damage on office buildings, electoral materials and office equipment, at a time INEC is preparing for 2023 general election.

 

Okoye described the attacks as worrisome and a setback to the ongoing activities and preparations for upcoming electoral activities, which included “the expansion of voters’ access to polling units, resumption of the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR), capacity- building activities, the review of the draft Strategic Plan 2022-2026, engagement with stakeholders as well as all scheduled and pending elections.”

 

INEC is facing the same challenges it faced in the run to the 2019 general election where its offices and electoral materials were attacked in various parts of the country.

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