By Peter Duru, Makurdi
Former Minister of State for Trade and Investment and All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship candidate in Benue state, Dr. Samuel Ortom, narrowly escaped death, Friday morning, when unknown gunmen attacked him and his entourage at Adikpo, in Kwande local government area of Benue state.
Saturday Vanguard gathered from a reliable source that the former Minister was attacked by the armed men at the funeral ceremony of university don, late Dr. Samson Sambe.
According to the source, “Dr. Ortom was delivering funeral oration at the burial ceremony when sporadic gunshots erupted from several directions at the venue which led to sympathizers scampering for safety.
“In the mist of the confusion, Dr. Ortom was shielded, his supporters made a circle around him, but in spite of the gun shots which intensified, his protectors refused to run away.
“It took the intervention of the elder brother of the deceased and Permanent Secretary, Bureau of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Dr. Asen Sambe, who had to appeal for calm as the funeral was hurriedly concluded.”
It was further gathered that the attackers also smashed and sprayed bullets on three branded vehicles of the APC on the convoy of the former Minister parked at the venue.
“We heard that the gang that carried out the attack was a group of armed men who ad carried out a kidnap operation outside Adikpo town who were escaping when they ran into the gathering.
When contacted, the Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Deputy Superintendent, DSP, Austin Ezeani said he was yet to receive briefs on the matter.