By Kingsley Omonobi and Ndahi Marama, Maiduguri

There was pandemonium in lgbokoda area of Ondo State when its prominent traditional ruler, Oba Afolabi Odidiomo escaped death by whiskers as gunmen matchetted him severally.

Members of the court martial sit during the inauguration to try soldiers accused of mutiny tasked with fighting Boko Haram militants in Abuja on October 2, 2014. Nearly 100 soldiers tasked with fighting Boko Haram militants in Nigeria’s far northeast appeared at a military court martial on Thursday, facing a range of charges including mutiny. The hearing comes just weeks after a tribunal sentenced 12 soldiers to death following their conviction for shooting at their commanding officer in the Borno state capital, Maiduguri, in May. AFP PHOTO

Oba Odidiomo was left in his pool of blood unconscious as his attackers numbering five inflicted several injuries on his neck and back.

Traditional chiefs and sympathisers rushed him to the State Specialist Hospital in the town where he was revived and subsequently referred to another hospital for proper medicare care.

Saturday Vanguard gathered that the attack on the Oba might not be unconnected with the supremacy battle over the control of the town.

Timely intervention of the state government and combine team of security operatives calmed the youths in the town, who planned to go on rampage.

The Deputy Governor, Hon. Agboola Ajayi who is from the Southern area of the state and the council of chiefs intervened by appealing to the youths that the perpetrators would be brought to book.

Eyewitness account said that the gunmen armed with cutlasses, broken bottles and knives invaded a meeting where the victims and other high chiefs in the town were present and shot severally in the air to scare away those present at the meeting.

His drivers and the vehicle were not spared by the attackers whose main target was the traditional ruler.

Oba Odidiomo said he had visited one of the High Chiefs in the town, a former Commissioner, Chief Lebi Adepiti thereafter to brief him about the development, when the suspected killers invaded the place.

He accused one Tale Iwatan of leading the hoodlums to attack him alleging that he had made several attempt to assassinate him but failed.

“I came back to Igbokoda in the evening and visited one of the high chiefs of the town to brief him on the development and outcome of the meeting. But I hardly entered the room when the attackers stormed the meeting with large number of armed bearing thugs who came with cutlasses, knives and guns.

“They shot sporadically into the air to scare away people and I came out to meet about five of them and I called the police in the town, but before the policemen could arrive at the scene of the incident, which was also a stone throw to the Nigerian Naval base in Igbokoda, the hoodlums had mobilised more men and attacked us.

According to him “all effort to arrest and prosecute the leader of the gang by the law enforcement agents were blocked by some of the influential personalities in the area.
Contacted, the state Police spokesperson, Femi Joseph, who confirmed the development said two of the gunmen have been arrested while their leader had fled.

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