Ikpeazu talks tough as fire guts INEC office in Abia


An inferno on Sunday morning gutted the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Obingwa Local Government, Abia State.
The fire destroyed documents, furniture and other valuables in the office leaving only the wall of the building and remains of materials made of steel.
A witness, Mr Chinyere Akwarandu, an official of the local government, said a corps member alerted him of the fire at 11 a.m. in his house
Akwarandu said the NYSC member, serving with INEC, reported that their building was on fire, following which he raced to the scene.
He said that on arrival at the scene, efforts were made to put out the fire, but the force of the inferno later prompted them to attempt to prevent it from extending to other buildings in the council secretariat.
“We tried what we could to stop it but it was too fierce for us. Earlier, we had called the fire service but they told us they had no diesel to drive their truck,” the witness said.
Governor Okezie Ikpeazu was among the early visitors to the council secretariat to assess the extent of damage.
Ikpeazu condemned the perpetrators, describing them as enemies of the state.
The governor expressed shock at the level of damage done to the building and charged the police and other law enforcement agencies to ensure that the culprits are brought to book.
He also called on the Police and the Army to beef up security in all INEC formations in the state to forestall such incidents.
He lamented over the tendency of some disgruntled elements in the state to vandalize public property, saying that “it is a big drawback to the effort of government in providing dividend of democracy”.
While reiterated the determination of his government to maintain law and order and protect life and property of the Abia citizenry, he used the occasion to warn perpetrators of such acts to turn to a new leaf as the current administration will not tolerate such deviate acts.


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