…As Gunmen Attack Convoy, Cart Away Result Sheets
The Senator representing Cross River North, Jarigbe Agom Jarigbe, on Saturday evening, escaped death by whiskers as hooded gunmen rained bullets on his convoy, scattering windscreens and doors of two of his vehicles, but the senator, it was gathered, escaped unhurt.
This happened even as collation of results for the Ogoja/Yala by-election was ongoing across the federal constituency. Pillar Today had earlier reported that the election was generally peaceful until the late hours of the evening when the gun-throttling men struck.
They were said to have moved around the town in about 15 vehicles, including a white tinted coaster bus, Hilux cars and sports utility vehicles, shooting sporadically into the air to scare residents.
An eye-witness, Kalistus Oko, said the incident happened at Abakpa axis of Ogoja when the gunmen were said to be returning from Mbube West where they had gone to cart away electoral materials. Oko said Jarigbe was at Ndok Junction trying to monitor situations within the area and was heading back into Ogoja town when the ugly incident happened.
Efforts to confirm the said attack on him was not successful as Senator Jarigbe’s telephone lines could not connect. But one of his aides, who did not want his name on print, said: ”It is true that my boss’ convoy was shot at and he narrowly escaped death. “We are grateful to security men in our team who quickly moved in and whisked him away, it would have been a different story today. Till this moment, we don’t know his whereabouts.”
Impeccable sources close to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, disclosed that the said hooded gunmen had carted away result sheets from 16 polling units and beat up some INEC ad hoc staff and voters. Our source however commended the proactiveness of the ad hoc staff for ability to secure some of the results and preserving the Bi-modal Voter Accreditation machines. However, as at the time of filling this report, INEC was yet to officially announce the result of the tension-soaked by-election