Authorities said on Monday that suspected armed separatists have killed at least eight police officers in the past three days in southeastern Nigeria, raising concerns ahead of the presidential election this weekend.
Four officers were killed in an attack on a police station in Anambra state on Monday, as authorities searched for suspects accused of killing four other officers over the weekend, the gate said. -local police spokesman, Tochukwu Ikenga .
The attackers opened fire on the officers while detonating explosives, he said, adding that three of the attackers were killed and two others arrested.
Police have blamed the attacks on a separatist group, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), which is seeking independence for the southeastern region.
Authorities have accused the IPOB of inciting violence, which has claimed many lives in the conflict-torn region and fueled fears that Nigerian security forces will not be able to protect voters during the polls.
The electoral commission may not be able to visit some polling stations due to security concerns, said Festus Okoye, an official with Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission.
“Security agencies promised they would be able to secure our communities so people could vote ,” he said. “(But) for people in areas where there is still conflict, there is absolutely nothing we can do.”