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Okpara, APGA Governor Candidate Escapes Assassination

Posted by Daily Champion (Lagos) on 2006/08/15 | Views: 876 |

Okpara, APGA Governor Candidate Escapes Assassination


Suspected gang of 20 armed robbers yesterday attacked Chief Uzodinma Okpara, son of former Premier of defunct Eastern Nigeria, Dr. Michael Okpara.

Suspected gang of 20 armed robbers yesterday attacked Chief Uzodinma Okpara, son of former Premier of defunct Eastern Nigeria, Dr. Michael Okpara.

Armed with AK 47 assault rifles they stormed Okpara's Umuahia home a day after he declared his interest in the governorship race of Abia State.

The armed men, according to security sources, told Okpara that they were sent to kill him but would not carry out that part of the plan because of his late father. Thereafter, they beat him up and instructed him to back out of Abia State governorship race. They carted away goods worth millions of naira, including his wife's jewelry. The armed men destroyed television sets and other properties.

Okpara declared his interest in the governorship of Abia at the commercial city of Aba. According to eyewitness accounts, the town came to a standstill as commercial motorcycle riders popularly called Okada formed a convoy for the son of the late Premier. All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) chieftain Dim Chukwuemka Odumegwu Ojukwu was at the venue of the declaration.

Analysts believe that Abia State will be one of the hotspots during the 2007 elections as Governor Orji Uzor Kalu would want to cement his hold on the State while the so-called Abuja politicians will stop at nothing to wrest power from him.

Assassination of candidates is becoming rampant ahead of the 2007 elections. Just recently, Funso Williams, a Lagos governorship aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was assassinated in his home. Yesterday, another governorship candidate from Ekiti State, Dr. Ayo Daramola was assassinated.

However a new twist was added to the story of the assassination attempt on Uzodinma Okpara. A source claimed that this may have been an armed robbery attack carried out by a local gang. The gang is said to have attacked two other families in the same city. Sources say that the robbers stole two vehicles from one of the families.

Another family in Umuahia, Abia State capital who had just buried their father was also visited by the robbers. Eyewitness accounts indicate that a United States (US)-based woman who is the daughter of the man that was buried on Saturday was shot and killed by the robbers. The victim was living in California and had traveled to Umuahia for this burial with her husband.

Uzodinma Okpara's house was the last one visited by the rampaging robbers sources said.

Gov. Orji Uzor Kalu visited the families this morning. According to Iyke Ekeoma, Special Adviser on media to Gov Kalu, "The Governor was informed of this attack this morning and we have just visited the families. The Governor, who was visibly shaken, vowed that the perpetrators would be found. This is armed robbery. It is a very disturbing trend."

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

Actually translates to bravehearted.