Police search for those who attacked Kogi REC's home.

Police search for those who attacked Kogi REC's home.A thorough inquiry into the attack on Dr. Gabriel Longpet, the Kogi State Resident Electoral Commissioner,'s home in the early hours of yesterday has been ordered by CP Bethrand C. Onuoha, the Commissioner of Police for Kogi State.


This occurred during yesterday's back-and-forth over the incident between the Kogi State chapters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Social Democratic Party (SDP).


Muritala Yakubu Ajaka, the SDP's candidate for governor, was to be arrested, although the party denied any role in the incident. The APC accused the SDP of being behind the attack.

"The Command received distress today, January 12, 2023, at about 0311hrs on the attack by unknown armed hoodlums who stormed the quarters of the REC and started shooting sporadically," the state's Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), SP William Ovye Aya, revealed in a statement released yesterday.


He claimed that the thugs were involved in a gunfight with the on-duty police officers at the house, after which they were prevented from entering.


The statement said, "In the meantime, the Sienna Bus they arrived with was seen burned to ashes at the frontage of the house."


According to Aya, the Commissioner of Police trailed the thugs and sent a reinforcement team of tactical operators to the spot right away. 


The CP praised the on-duty guards for their bravery and diligence, he continued.


In addition to denouncing the attacks, the Commissioner charged the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) with opening an investigation in the hopes of catching the attackers and bringing them to justice.


"The CP urged the good people of Kogi State to work with the security agencies by way of volunteering credible and timely information on the activities of criminal elements in the state to enable prompt and commensurate response," the statement continued, "while assuring them of the Command's unwavering commitment to guarantee the safety of lives and property of all law abiding citizens."


In response to the incident, the Kogi State APC Governorship Campaign Council urged the police, Department of State Services (DSS), and other security agencies to apprehend Ajaka and his supporters right away, alleging that they planned the attack on the REC's residence. The council described this as the state sliding toward anarchy.


"They have finally done their worst by attacking the residence of the Kogi REC, engaging security agents in a fierce gun battle, and eventually burning down some vehicles in the residence and in the area," the campaign council said, adding that the attack was carried out days after it informed the country of SDP thugs' plans to attack INEC.


Kingsley Fanwo, the Campaign Council's Director of Media and Publicity and Spokesperson, told reporters yesterday that the same arsonists also attempted to set fire to the Kogi State Government House, but our astute security personnel thwarted their plan. At the State APC Secretariat in Lokoja, the similar attempt was thwarted.


In order to hide their alleged theft in Kogi East, where they killed APC supporters "and drove them out of collation centers to forge the results that were eventually trumped by the massive votes of Kogites for the Governor-elect," the SDP in the state and their allies, according to the APC, were desperate to destroy some documents in INEC.  


The campaign council said that before delivering specific INEC documents to their legal team, the SDP candidate and his allies were trying to tamper with them. 


"We don't have any issues with giving legal teams access to records and information. It is customary. However, Fanwo said, "We won't allow any desperate, bloodthirsty politician to tamper with the true verdict of the Kogi people."  


He stated that the lack of repercussions for the horrific murder of an APC supporter, Khadijat, in Kotonkarfe by SDP operatives, was the reason behind the brazen criminality being committed by the failed SDP candidate and his vicious band of criminals.


"It's time to arrest Muritala Yakubu Ajaka before he sends Kogi into a state of anarchy," the party continued. Democracy is the people's way of expressing their wishes. No number of shots will be able to quiet the voice of the ballot, as those wishes have already been stated. We demand that Muritala Yakubu Ajaka and his fellow swimmers in the pool of violence be apprehended by the police, DSS, and other security services right away in order to stop the spiral into chaos. The call will be more effective if the anarchists are quickly captured and put on trial, as we have advised our supporters to do.


The Director of New Media for the Muri/Sam Campaign Organization, David Ijele, refuted the accusations in a statement released yesterday in Lokoja. He said: "We strongly condemn the assassination attempt on the INEC Resident Commissioner for Kogi state, Dr. Hale Gabriel Longpet, which took place in Lokoja at approximately 2:00am this morning, December 1, 2023."


"Elections should not be viewed as a battle or as a life-or-death decision. If the election was won in a transparent and equitable manner, the legal process ought to be permitted to proceed unhindered. But it's not right that thugs, who turned out in large numbers yesterday, be the target of fictitious demonstrations. Forensic teams should never be prevented from performing their duties.


"We are appreciative of the Army's prompt action, as the man and his family would have perished over night. In addition, the assailants stole other valuables and set fire to his cars. A democratic society does not tolerate behavior like this.


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