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Accidental discharge: Presidential Villa safe, Presidency assures

By Levinus Nwabughiogu
ABUJA — Presidency has assured Nigerians and foreigners that the Presidential Villa, Abuja was safe and secure.

The assurance followed an accidental discharge by a security operative on Wednesday.

A staff of the State House, Mrs. Gladys Okpa, escaped death by the whiskers when the gun suddenly went off.

The incident occurred about noon when the security operative, apparently from the Department of State Service, DSS, came into the Presidential Villa with his gun loaded and while trying to empty the gun, as  required by other security men mounting sentry at the main entrance of the building, it suddenly went off.

He was injured on his hand just as the pellet also strayed, hitting Mrs. Okpa, who was standing nearby un-mindful of the development.

Both persons were immediately rushed to the Villa clinic for first aid.

Reacting to the incident in statement, yesterday, Presidential spokesman, Mallam Garba Shehu, said the Villa was safe.

The statement read: “According to reports received so far, the security official involved in this incident is not attached to the State House.

“Rather, he came on invitation as a witness in an ongoing investigation and was required, as is the rule, to surrender his weapon at the gates before entry.

“Investigation revealed that the operative conducted the normal safety precaution as professionally required when the pistol accidentally fired.

“The lady by his side, a caterer, was hit by a pellet of the bullet. Both of them were attended to at the clinic and discharged.”

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