What was appraised to be a peaceful election in Adamawa State turned violent in Lamurde Local Government Area of the state when angry voters allegedly attacked an electoral official.
At least, seven houses were reported to have been set ablaze in Gyawana, also in Lamurde, near the Savannah Sugar Company, Numan, in another incident.
Findings indicated that the electoral official went to a centre with one ballot box instead of two.
The centre has two polling units and usually has two ballot boxes.
However, the official arrived with only one box on Saturday morning, fuelling suspicions that he might have hidden the second one for possible vote manipulation.
Voters were said to have pounced on him when his explanations that he forgot to bring the box fell on deaf ears.
It was learnt that he pleaded with the voters to let him to go and get the second box, but the irate voters did not listen to him.
In the confusion, the ballot box he brought was reportedly snatched and taken to an unknown destination.
When contacted, the Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, Kassim Gaidam, confirmed to have “heard the rumour of such an incident.”
Gaidam told our correspondent that from information available to him, the official “went with one ballot box to the place instead of two.”
He added, “When they asked him, he explained that he forgot the second box and that he should be allowed to go and get it.
“But, maybe the people were impatient and they descended on him, thinking that he took it to somebody’s house or so.”
He also admitted to have heard of the torching of houses in another location in the same local government, but could not confirm whether it was connected with the poll.
“I have asked security agencies to investigate the matter and they are already looking into it”, he added.
The state Police Command confirmed that there was “a little problem” in Lamurde, but clarified that the situation was not linked to election.
The command’s spokesperson, Atini Daniels, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, attributed the problems to “communal issues.”
“They have their own internal crisis there not connected to election.
“However, the Area Commander has been directed to find out the exact situation of things and report back”, she added.
She claimed not to have heard that houses were torched in the crisis.
“No, it is not true; also nobody was injured, nobody was killed’’, she said.