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Today is 10 years after attack on Ibru

Posted by By Yinka Aderibigbe on 2006/02/01 | Views: 408 |

Today is 10 years after attack on Ibru

EXACTLY a decade after an aborted attempt to cut short his life, the Publisher of The Guardian, Dr. Alex Uruemu Ibru, is today thanking the Almighty God and counting his blessings.

EXACTLY a decade after an aborted attempt to cut short his life, the Publisher of The Guardian, Dr. Alex Uruemu Ibru, is today thanking the Almighty God and counting his blessings.

Mr. Ibru was on his way back home along the Falomo Bridge in Ikoyi, Lagos, on the fateful day when the assailants, in another Peugeot 504 car, closed up on his own car and rained bullets on him. They sped off immediately taking him for dead.

The battle to save the publisher's life began moments after the attackers had made their escape.

Ibru was on the backseat of his car in a pool of his own blood.

First, he was taken to a private hospital, from there he was transferred to St. Nicholas Hospital on the Island where specialist doctors began a battle for his life.

Less than 24 hours later, he was flown in an emergency air ambulance to the United Kingdom. He arrived Britain on Sunday, where surgeons carried out a delicate six and a half-hours surgery on him.

Not only did he survive the operation, the rate of his recuperation has been described as miraculous. Above all, contrary to the prognosis of neuro-surgeons, Mr. Ibru regained his full mental alertness.

A statement announcing the attempt on the publisher's life sparked a swift reaction from the then Head of State, the late Gen. Sani Abacha, who ordered the Nigeria Police "to fish out the killers."

By Tuesday, February 6, 1996, the police came out to say that the attack on the publisher was a "mere armed robbery attack."

Revelations at both the Justice Chukwudifu Oputa panel and the courts where Abacha's Chief Security Officer, Maj. Hamza al-Mustapha and five others are currently standing trial over the attempted murder have since uncovered a can of worms.

A member of the killer squad who was a principal witness, Barnabas Mshelia (a.k.a Sergeant Rogers) spilled the beans when he disclosed that Ibru was declared "an enemy of a state" and the order for his assassination was given by al-Mustapha.

He confessed to pulling the trigger on the AK 47 employed in the shooting. The state is now prosecuting the persons allegedly involved in the shooting. They are former Chief of Army Staff, General Ishaya Bamaiyi, Colonel Jubril Yakubu, CSP Mohammed Rabo Lawal, Police Commissioner James Danbaba and Major Hamza Al-Mustapha.

Until a year before the attack, Mr. Ibru had served as the Minister of Internal Affairs in the Abacha Administration and member of the Provisional Ruling Council.

Since his miraculous recovery however, Mr. Ibru has resisted all pressure to press charges against his attackers. Rather, he has redoubled his energy in the building of the fortunes of his thriving group of newspapers and greater commitment to God through the Trinity Foundation and the Ibru Ecumenical Centre.

"I have forgiven all my adversaries and I'm rededicating my life to serve God who has given me a new lease of life," Mr. Ibru said.

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Comments (3)

Abieyuwa(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Otasowie means evening life is better than morning life. There is an error in your “evening life is better than evening life”?

Naija g(Houston, Minnesota, US)says...

Sokari doesn’t mean joy. Joy is Biobela. Go to the village and ask the meaning of the name.

Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.