Nigeria: Fire Guts Election Materials in Anambra

INEC container on fire in Anambra, card readers burnt.
12 February 2019

An office for Nigeria's election commission, Independent National Electoral Commission, has been burned down just four days before the general election.

The fire in INEC Anambra State destroyed some election materials.

Firefighters and security operatives arrived the scene to put out the fire which already burnt a container containing the card readers and other election materials.

Nigeria heads to poll on Saturday with the presidential and National Assembly elections while gubernatorial and states House of Assemblies are scheduled to hold on March 2 across Nigeria.

The outbreak caused staff of the Commission to flee their offices for safety. The cause of the fire is yet to be ascertained.

The latest incident continues the case of curious fire incidents at INEC offices in recent weeks.

Two Nigerian electoral commission offices housing voting materials were burned down within the space of a week INEC said Sunday.

The commission said more than 10,000 permanent voters' cards and 755 ballot boxes were destroyed in two fire incidents in Abia and Plateau states last week.

The INEC did not say who was responsible for the fires, but it said it had notified the Acting Inspector General of Police on the "emerging trend of burning the electoral commissions' offices" days before the poll.

Elections will go as ahead as scheduled in the affected states, the commission said, adding that it had made arrangements to print new voter cards to replace those destroyed in the fire.

"The Commission wishes to assure Nigerians that it will not succumb to the antics of an arsonist whose motive might create fear in the minds of voters and sabotage the conduct of the 2019 general elections," said INEC spokesman Festus Okoye.

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