Ad-hoc staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and waiting voters fled on Saturday morning when gunmen stormed the Roman Catholic Missionary Primary School in Mbalon Council Ward of Gwer East Local Government Council, Benue state shortly after 8 am on Saturday.
No one suffered bodily harm from the hoodlums but some were slightly injured while fleeing.
The armed hoodlums said to be numbering about 20 arrived, firing shots in the air and subsequently proceeded to burn down all election materials.Although the INEC Electoral Officer for Gwer East, Mrs Ngunan Yongo, confirmed the incident, she declined to give further details as she switched off her phone.
She said that the materials affected were meant for polling units on Mbalon ward.
A senior staff of INEC. Mr Thaddeus Ujah also confirmed the attack at Mbalon ward.
“I am overwhelmed; we were not expecting anything of that nature, I am short of words.
“I can’t see some of my people, they ran into the bush, some of them got injured.
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“The most important thing to me now is to get those people and take them back”, he said.
On Saturday morning, there were also reports that the PDP ward office in Wannunen, the village of Benue APC strongman, Senator George Akume was razed down by angry youth but The Nation was yet to authoritatively confirm the incident.
Asked for clarification, the state’s new Commissioner of Police, Mr Umar Muri who resumed duty on Friday said that he was not yet aware of such incidents.
“As far as I am concerned, there is nothing like that,” Miri told The Nation on telephone.
In most parts of Makurdi, the state capital, INEC staff arrived early and voting began much earlier than what obtained during the presidential and National Assembly elections’