With twelve incidents, Imo State in south east Nigeria recorded the highest number of attacks on offices of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) between 2019 and 2022, an INEC publication, entitled “Attacks on INEC Offices 2019-2022” and other notices have revealed. It was followed by Osun State where seven attacks took place on the INEC offices in that state.

During the four-year period, attacks on INEC offices across the federation amounted to 51, and by nature of incidents, 21 of the attacks were regarded as arsons, 26 were vandalisations while 4 were both arsons and vandalisations.

“These are attacks as a result of election-related violence, protests unrelated to elections and activities of thugs and unknown gunmen/hoodlums. The list does not include damages to facilities as a result of fire accidents, natural disasters such as flooding or rain/wind storms, the snatching/destruction of electoral materials during elections, burglary and attack on election duty officials,” INEC said.

On a year-on-year basis, 8 attacks took place in 2019. The following year, 2020, witnessed 22 attacks, 12 attacks in 2021 while 9 attacks happened thus far in 2022.

Eight attacks each happened on the INEC offices in Enugu and Akwa Ibom; four attacks each in Ebonyi, Cross River and Abia; two attacks each in Taraba and Anambra, while an attack each took place on the INEC office in Borno, Kaduna, Bayelsa, Ondo, Lagos and Ogun states.

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Specifically in 2022, the attacks on INEC offices in Imo State took place at Orlu LGA office, Orlu West LGA office, State Headquarters, Owerri, and Isu LGA.

In Enugu State, the attacks on INEC offices were at Igboeze North LGA office and Udenu LGA office. And it was the INEC office at Izzi LGA office in Ebonyi that was attacked in 2022.

The INEC office in Ede South LGA in Osun State was also not spared as unknown gunmen unleashed terror on the edifice on November 10, 2022. Also, the INEC office in Abeokuta South LGA was attacked by unknown gunmen and hoodlums on November 10, 2022.

According to the schedule for the 2023 general elections, the presidential and national assembly elections will be held on February 25, 2023. This is as INEC has registered 84 million Nigerian voters, who will vote in 176,846 polling units for candidates across 18 different political parties.