By Dennis Udoma, Uyo
The immediate past Special Assistant to Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State on Electoral Matters, Barrister Mfon Udeme has been shot by gunmen.
The former aide was attacked at about 1: 15 am in his residence at Itam Community near Uyo.
Udeme, a couple of weeks ago resigned from his personal assistant job under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and defected to the All Progressives Congress, APC, on grounds that majority of the governor’s appointees were starved of allowances, offices and working tools.
He said, the gunmen who were more than 15 invaded his house after successfully scaling the fence, dragged him out and shot him adding that, the attack was politically motivated as the hoodlums rejected financial offers.
According to him, he told them ‘‘Gentlemen we don’t have much money these days in the house, but I have some cash in the car.” He said further, “the men did not show any interest in the money but immediately pushed me to a corner and shot at me”.
But, the Akwa Ibom State government in a swift reaction by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Ekerete Udoh described the incident as a mere robbery attack.
‘‘Contrary to the claim by the APC State Caucus Chairman, Chief Don Etiebet that the reported attack earlier this evening on Barrister Mfon Udeme who a few weeks ago, had resigned his appointment as the Special Assistant to the Governor on Electoral Matters and later defected to the APC was an assassination attempt, the Akwa Ibom State Police Commissioner, Mr. Adeyemi Ogunjemilusi has stated that the attack was an armed robbery attack and not an assassination attempt’’, the statement by the Chief Press Secretary stated.
The incident has attracted wide condemnations by residents of the state. Among them, is the APC State Caucus Chairman, Chief Don Etiebet who blamed the series of attacks against his party’s men in the state on the state government.
Similarly, Senator Godswill Akpabio and the APC governorship flag-bearer, Obong Nsima Ekere’s residences have also been attacked by yet to be identified gunmen immediately the former governor decamped from the PDP.
The victim, who was a one-time Chairman of Ibiono Ibom local government area and presently being treated at an undisclosed private hospital in Uyo, expressed fears on the development and called on the security agencies to thoroughly investigate the matter.
Meanwhile, Governor Emmanuel is alleged to have been deeply worried by the gale of defections by his aides to the All Progressives Congress, APC, in recent times.
Recently, a section of the national media had reported scheming by over 200 aides of the governor to defect to the ruling APC in the build up to the governorship election in 2019.
In a related development, the Editor and Publisher of Midweek Global Concord, Mr Unyime Ekwere was also attacked by hoodlums.
The journalist who recently won the APC nomination for Etinan State Constituency was waylaid by thugs alleged to be supporters of another APC aspirant from the area.
Though, details for the attack was not immediately known but, it was gathered, the journalist received a call from a party stalwart who directed him to go to Cordial Suite Hotel and fill the INEC form as the candidate of the party for the forthcoming election.
An unconfirmed report said, when Unyime arrived the gate of the hotel, thugs allegedly working for another aspirant names withheld, descended on him and threatened to deal with him if he enters the hotel, insisting that he cannot be the candidate of APC for Etinan state constituency.
APC State Chairman, Ini Okopido on smelling a rat, was said to have stepped in and addressed the matter but, despite his intervention, the hoodlums descended on their prey and beat him to a pulp.