By Samuel Oyadongha
Yenagoaâ€”The crisis rocking the Bayelsa State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) took a new twist weekend as the country home of the chairman, Chief Rufus Abadi, at Otuan community in the Southern Ijaw local government area of the state was attacked by unknown gunmen.
Though no life was lost during the attack in which the chairmanâ€™s wife was allegedly held captive by the gunmen before she was later set free, property running into hundreds of thousand of naira were destroyed by the invaders.
Abadi, it was learnt, escaped death by the whiskers as he had earlier planned to join his wife and other family members at Otuan, weekend, but had to change his mind and remain in Yenagoa when the gunmen struck thinking he was already at the village.
The invaders armed with AK 47 assault rifles and other dangerous weapons were said to have stormed the chairmanâ€™s country home situated in front of the community waterfront in two speedboats at about 2am.
The attack on the party chairman, the second within two weeks it was learnt might not be unconnected with the crisis of confidence rocking the PDP family in the state.
Sources told Vanguard that the gunmen who invaded the country home of the chairman held his wife captive at gun point and ordered her to conduct them round the apartment and ransacked all the rooms.
The soak away in the premises was also destroyed by the invaders to ascertained if the chairman was hiding inside.
Angered that their target was not at home the invaders after destroying some of the properties in the apartment it was further learnt removed the CCTV recorder in the house ostensibly to conceal their identity.
Chairman of the party, Chief Abadi who said the attack was politically motivated while conducting newsmen round his country home in the riverine settlement of Otuan recalled how two weeks ago some miscreants invaded his residence at Yenagoa but were dislodged by the policemen guarding his premises.
In a statement also issued yesterday by the Personal Assistant to the Party Chairman, Mr. Abiri Jones, the mission of the gunmen was to assassinate his boss and that the invasion of the his country home was based on the excuse he made for not attending the controversial Friday meeting of the party in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.
Jones Abiri stated that â€œwe have a reason to suspect that the non-attendance of the party chairman at the purported PDP meeting in Yenagoa on Friday may have been responsible for the attack. We have reported to the state police command and they have detailed the Otuan Division to conduct preliminary investigation.â€
Abiri said a fact finding visit of the Chairman, himself and two others at the scene of the attack was â€œpitifulâ€,â€ they even removed the cover of the septic tank in search of my boss.â€
The embattled Chief Rufus Abadi, was the leader of the PDP faction loyal to Governor Timipre Sylva until a sour relationship developed among members and it led to his invitation by the SSS over alleged petition on threat to life by one of his aides and his eviction from the VIP lodge of the Government House where he was being accommodated.
It was gathered that the Friday meeting, which was held at the Party Secretariat along the Alamieyeseigha way, was less than fifteen minutes and was not an enlarged one as announced by the State Publicity Secretary on national televisions.
In the announcement issued on the meeting, the State Publicity Secretary, Eni Angaye said the meeting would be an enlarged one with the Vice President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, the National Assembly members, the State House of Assembly members and the other stakeholders expected to be in attendance.