The Imo State Command of the Nigeria Police Force has said suspected members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its militant wing, the Eastern Security Network (ESN), were responsible for Sunday’s attack on the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission in the state.
SaharaReporters reported that INEC announced that its office in Oru West Local Government Area of the state was attacked early on Sunday.
The recent attack comes barely three months before the conduct of the 2023 general elections. According to INEC, there have been seven attacks on its facilities in five states within the last four months.
This was disclosed in a circular released on Sunday by Festus Okoye Esq, INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman of the commission’s Information and Voter Education Committee while announcing Sunday’s attack on its office in Imo.
Mike Abattam, the state police spokesperson, said the gunmen threw Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) into the office from outside the perimeter fence of the facility, adding that officers were able to repel the attack.
He said, “The police operatives who engaged the hoodlums professionally inflicted various degrees of injuries on them. Having suffered a huge defeat, the hoodlums retreated, escaping in their vehicle and were given a hot chase by the operatives.
“In the course of their escape, the explosives fell on the Conference Room of the INEC office and caused minor damages to some of the furniture and windows. No life was lost.”
The police also asked the public to provide credible information and report anyone seen treating bullet wounds or hiding in their communities to the nearest police station. They said they can be reached through the emergency numbers of their command’s control room: 08034773600 or 08098880197.