In the past two years, at least 41 offices of the electoral commission, INEC, have been attacked across Nigeria by armed non-state actors.
The data on the attacked offices were made available to PREMIUM TIMES by INEC.
The attacks occurred in 14 states between February 2019 and May 2021.
Imo State topped the log with the most attacks during the period under review.
“These are attacks as a result of election-related violence, protests unrelated to elections and activities of thugs and unknown gunmen,” INEC chairman, Mahmud Yakubu, said.
“The list does not include damages to facilities as a result of fire accidents, natural disasters such as flooding or rain/windstorms, the snatching/destruction of electoral materials during elections, burglary and attack on election duty officials,” he added.
According to INEC, most of the attacks on its facilities were orchestrated by hoodlums and unknown gunmen, while some were results of post-election violence and thuggery during elections.
The commission said there were 18 attacks on its facilities during the ENDSARS protests last year and 11 attacks carried out by gunmen.
Similarly, there were six incidents of thuggery during elections and four incidents in post-election violence, INEC said.
Describing the nature of the attacks, INEC said 20 cases of vandalization and 18 arsons occurred during the period. It also categorised three incidents as “arson and vandalization.”
Of the total number of incidents, the commission said 21 attacks occurred last year across nine states. This year, assailants have staged 11 attacks across seven states.
Meanwhile, nine incidents occurred in four states during and after the general election in 2019.
Below is the timeline of attacks on INEC offices:
February 3, 2019: Arsonists attacked an INEC office in Orlu local government after a court ordered a rerun election in Imo State.
February 22, 2019: Arsonists set 12 election duty vehicles ablaze at INEC office in Obot Akara local government of Akwa Ibom State.
February 23, 2019: Thugs attack INEC office at Oriade local government of Osun State.
February 24, 2019: In a post-election violence, arsonists attack the commission’s office at Isiala Mbano local government of Imo State.
March 6, 2019: In another arson incident, thugs attacked INEC office at Ibesikpo Asutan local government of Akwa Ibom State.
March 6, 2019: On the same day, arsonists attacked the INEC office at Eastern Obolo local government of Akwa Ibom State.
March 9, 2019: Arsonists attacked the INEC office at Mpat Enin local government of Akwa Ibom State.
March 10, 2019: INEC office at Ngor Okpala local government of Imo State was attacked by arsonists in post-election violence.
November 16, 2019: Thugs attacked the INEC office at Nembe local government of Bayelsa State in a vandalization incident.
January 14, 2020: INEC office at Aboh Mbaise local government was attacked following a protest against the judgement of supreme court in respect of the governorship election.
October 20, 2020: ENDSARS protesters attacked INEC office at Lagos Island.
October 20, 2020: In another incident of vandalism, ENDSARS protesters attacked INEC office at Aba South local government in Abia state.
October 21, 2020: INEC office at Arochukwu local government of Abia State was vandalized by ENDSARS protesters.
October 21, 2020: Arsonists vandalized INEC office during the ENDSARS protests at Nnewi North local government of Anambra State.
October 22, 2020: Again, arsonists vandalized INEC office at Okitipupa local government of Ondo sState. The incident happened during the ENDSARS protest.
October 23, 2020: INEC offices at Ehime Mbano and Ezinhitte local government of Imo state were vandalized during the ENDSARS protests.
October 24, 2020: Arsonists joined the ENDSARS protests to vandalize four INEC offices in Cross Rivers State. The offices include the state headquarters, Akpabuyo local government office, and Bakassi and Calabasas municipal local government offices.
October 24, 2020: In Osun State, arsonists vandalised five INEC offices during the ENDSARS protests in a day.
The incidents occurred at Orolu local government, Atakumosa, Ifelodun, Irepodun and Ede South local government offices.
October 25, 2020: INEC offices at Wukari and Donga local governments of Taraba State were vandalised.
November 26, 2020: Boko Haram attacks INEC office at Hawul local government in Borno State.
December 13, 2020: Unknown gunmen attack INEC office in Aba South local government of Abia State.
January 30, 2021: Bandits attacked INEC office at Giwa local government of Kaduna State.
May 2, 2021: Hoodlums attacked INEC office at Essien Udim local government of Akwa Ibom State.
May 9, 2021: Arsonists attacked INEC office at Ohafia local government of Abia State.
May 13, 2021: Arsonists vandalized INEC office at Udenu local government of Enugu State.
May 16, 2021: INEC Enugu State headquarters was vandalized by unknown gunmen and hoodlums.
May 18, 2021: Unknown gunmen attacked three INEC offices in Ebonyi State. Ebonyi, Ezza North and Izzi local government were the locations where the incidents occurred.
May 23, 2021: Hoodlums attacked INEC office at Igboeze South local government in Enugu State.
May 23, 2021: INEC state headquarters was attacked by unknown gunmen in Anambra State.
May 23, 2021: Hoodlums vandalised INEC office at Ahiazu Mbaise local government of Imo State.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: To advertise here . Call Willie +2347088095401...