Bayelsa State, November 11, 2023 – In a startling turn of events, an Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) official assigned to Registration Area-06 (Ossioma) in Sagbama Local Government Area, Bayelsa State, was abducted early this morning. The official, whose identity remains undisclosed by the electoral commission, was kidnapped while awaiting a boat at Amassoma Jetty.
Wilfred Ifogah, the Head of Voter Education and Publicity in the state, confirmed the incident, stating, “We wish to confirm that a boat carrying election personnel to Registration Area-17 (Koluama) in Southern Ijaw LGA capsized.”
The security agencies have been alerted, and efforts are underway to rescue the kidnapped INEC official. Ifogah assured, “Fortunately, no life was lost as all the election personnel numbering 12 and the boat operator were rescued.”
Unfortunately, the boat accident resulted in the loss of crucial election materials. “We lost our result sheets, power banks, and luggage containing personal effects of staff,” Ifogah revealed.
The impact of this loss extends to the potential disenfranchisement of 5,368 registered voters in Registration Area-17 (Koluama). Despite this setback, INEC is determined to ensure the conduct of elections in the affected area. Ifogah emphasized, “The total number of registered voters in the affected Registration Areas is 5,368, and the number of PVCs collected is 5,311. INEC is making efforts to ensure the conduct of the election in the affected area.”