By the Blouin News Politics staff

Violence halts election in key Nigerian state

by in Africa.

Voting in Nigeria. (Source: ayo_adewunmi/flickr)

Voting in Nigeria. (Source: ayo_adewunmi/flickr)

Results from Saturday’s election in Nigeria’s oil-rich Rivers state have been suspended due to a shocking amount of politically-motivated violence. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) reported that some of its staffers had been abducted and killed by “well armed thugs and miscreants allegedly acting on behalf of some politicians.” These criminals also barricaded INEC offices, stole ballots and other government materials, and threatened voters and officials.

The INEC staffers are now part of a long list of victims of the bitter, ongoing battle between the nationally-ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Rivers state. Home to major oil reserves, and two of the national oil company’s refineries, Rivers is nominally the country’s second richest state. However, corruption and political violence are so rampant there that the vast majority of its residents live in poverty, and the environment is disastrously polluted from numerous oil spills and deliberate sabotages.

Last week the APC claimed that 32 of its members had been killed…

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