The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has confirmed news report on assault against some of its staff in the just concluded presidential and National Assembly elections that held on February 23, 2019.
In a statement relased by the commission on Friday, Festus Okoye, INEC Commissioner for Information and Voter Education, expressed deep regret and sympathy for victims of election violence.
There has been reports of attacks on electoral officers, who were forced to alter election results, write fake results, thumbprint ballot papers for parties and in some cases hijack and disrupt the electoral process
Okoye, in a statement said: “While the elections were generally peaceful, there was high level of violence in a few places in addition to the subjugation of some of our electoral officials to threats, harassment, intimidation, assault, abduction and even rape.
“The Commission condoles with the families of its ad hoc staff who lost their lives while on this national assignment, as well as other Nigerians who died in the course of the elections.
“It also expresses its deep regrets and sympathy for all victims of this mindless violence. We stand with them in these difficult times.”
The commission also questioned the actions of security agencies on compromising the election process, allowing for its members to be attacked.
“While acknowledging their professionalism in the deployment of election personnel and materials in a safe and timely manner, the conduct of certain members of the security agencies in some states is a matter of serious concern to the Commission.
“This matter will be further discussed directly with the Inspector-General of Police within the ambit of the lnter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES),” Okoye added.