Gunmen abduct INEC official, hijack electoral materials in Cross River

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Gunmen have abducted an ad hoc staff member of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Cross River state.

The electoral official, whose identity is yet to be confirmed, was abducted while conveying election materials for the rerun in Abi constituency on Saturday.

Mohammed Lecky, commissioner in charge of south-south, confirmed the victim was the state’s presiding officer (SPO) for the poll.

Lecky told journalists that the SPO was waylaid alongside his colleagues while conveying the materials through a river leading to the community.

He said while the others including members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) were later released, the SPO is still being held, and the materials yet to be returned.

He added that the security operatives accompanying the INEC team avoided a confrontation with the gunmen to avoid casualties.

Irene Ugbo, spokesperson of Cross River police command, did not immediately respond to enquiries for comments.

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