A container laden with card readers meant for February 16 presidential and national assembly elections was on fire about an hour ago at the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Awka, Anambra state.
The incident sparked confusion as INEC officials preparing for the elections scuttled to safety.
The cause of the fire outbreak could not be immediately ascertained. Security operatives are assisting a team of firefighters battling to contain the fire outbreak.
This is the third time in one week that fire incident would be recorded in the offices of the electoral body across the country.
Last week, permanent voter cards were set ablaze at the INEC office in Isialangwa south local government area of Abia. On Saturday, fire also destroyed permanent voter cards and other electoral materials at the commission’s office in Qua’an Pan local government of Plateau.
After the Plateau incident, Mohammed Adamu, acting inspector general of police, “ordered a comprehensive, round-the-clock” security in all offices and facilities of INEC nationwide.
He directed all commissioners of police in the 36 states and Abuja to put in place “adequate, functional and purposeful” security arrangements aimed at protecting all INEC offices and materials from all forms of crimes and mischief before, during and after the elections.
The commission is yet to react to the latest fire incident.
Photo credit: Manuel Ruddy Ac