Governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Nsima Ekere on Wednesday narrated how he narrowly escaped being hit by a bullet fired directly into his bedroom by unknown assailants.
Ekere who is also Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) said the bullet shot was a deliberate attempt on his life.
Narrating how it happened, Ekere said he was meeting party leaders in the nearby residence of the Managing Director of the Oil and Gas Free Zones Authority, Mr Umana Umana, when the bullet was fired into his upstairs bedroom where his wife and sister were at the time.
Following a distress call from his wife, Obong Ekere, accompanied by party leaders, rushed home to the scene of the incident.
The scene was subsequently cordoned off and the expended bullet taken away by security agents following the visit of Commissioner of Police Adeyemi Ogunjemilusi and some personnel from the Police and the Department of State Security (DSS).
The Police however declined to speak on the matter when contacted for comments.
Ekere said that the incident was disturbing coming at the beginning of the electioneering season and shortly after an attack on the residence of Senator Godswill Akpabio.
He appealed to Inspector-General of Police and the DSS Director-General to take a serious look at the security situation in the state and the attempt on his life coming shortly after Governor Udom Emmanuel recruited some notorious retired and serving security personnel who previously served in the state to form his security architecture.
Obong Ekere also condemned the destruction of some of his campaign billboards in Uyo
“We don’t understand this level of intolerance for the opposition. Democracy is about allowing people to choose who they want. I call on the federal government to cause the state government to allow democracy to thrive in Akwa Ibom State without let or hindrance,” he said.
The APC State Caucus Chairman Chief Don Etiebet described the assassination attempt on Ekere as callous, sad and untoward and called on security agencies to thoroughly investigate it.
APC Chairman Ini Okopido, said the party was shocked that “we just nominated a candidate two days ago and they came here to kill him today.”
He criticized the state government for issuing a nolle prosequi to discontinue the trial of suspected PDP thugs who were arraigned in court by the police for violently disrupting a rally by APC in Ika, his local government area.
Senator Akpabio, recalled the attack on his residence and said the assassination attempt on Ekere was a panicky measure to intimidate the APC which is heading for victory in the state.
“Now, it is very clear that this is an orchestrated attempt to intimidate the APC. When they say that APC is in opposition, I disagree. If we were in opposition before, now with the influx of Akwa Ibom people into APC in the last one and a half months, I can tell you that the APC is actually the majority party in Akwa Ibom State. What is happening is a panicky measure.’
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Ita Enang said: “we will not be threatened to back down on the decision to sweep Udom Emmanuel’s PDP Government out of Akwa Ibom State in the next election and to elect Obong Nsima Ekere as our Governor in 2019 because no matter the threats and antics, the people of Akwa Ibom State are determined.”