Ndubuisi Ugah, with agency reports
The Nasarawa State government Friday said nine people had been arrested over the killing of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chairman, Phillip Shekwo.
The arrest emerged as Shekwo was buried Friday in his home town, Yelwa, Toto Local Government Area amid tears by family and sympathisers.
Governor Abdullahi Sule disclosed this, while hosting members of the Trade Union Congress in Lafia, the state capital.
He said: “For the past four days, the combined military operations have been trailing the routes where they believe those who killed our Chairman followed. They have been combing the place.
“I am happy to inform you that the people we were suspecting, so far anyway, nine people have been arrested and are being interrogated in connection to the killing of our Chairman.”
According to the governor, combined military operations killed three people in connection to the killing at the Loko development area of the state, adding that four AK-47 rifles were also recovered.
“More important than that, around 3 am this morning, the combined operations followed some of these people around Loko and they killed three of them, after killing them they recovered four AK47 rifles from them, we are hoping and praying that it is the same people who carried out this exercise,” he added.
He also reiterated his administration’s commitment to improving the security situation in the state, noting: “We have always said that security is never too expensive for us unless we don’t have the resources but if we have the resources, we will put in all our resources to make sure that we protect the lives and property of our people, that we have taken seriously and will continue to do that.”
This comes five days after the Commissioner of Police, Bola Longe in the state told Channels Television that Shekwo who was earlier kidnapped at his residence on Saturday was found dead.
The police boss said the body of the deceased was found not far from his house in Lafia, Nasarawa State capital, and has been evacuated to the Dalhatu Araf specialist hospital.
Meanwhile, Shekwo was buried at about 2:20 p.m. at his residence in accordance with Christian rites.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that Shekwo was abducted on November 21 from his residence in Lafia, the state capital, and found dead the following day.
Sule while speaking at the funeral service at Ebenezer Baptist Chruch, Yelwa, assured of the state government’s commitment to fish out perpetrators of the crime to serve as deterrent to others.
Also speaking, wife of the deceased, Larai, said that her husband was a peaceful man.
“My husband was a man of prayers, man that does not want to cheat, he was a caring father and hero,” she said.
She urged the people to pray for the family and for the repose of her husband’s soul.
In his sermon, Dr Bulus Ali, President of Benue/ Nasarawa Baptist Conference, said death was is an inevitable end of all human and living beings.
“There is no end to death as there is life after death and there is going to be judgment after death,” he said.
NAN reports that other dignitaries in attendance at the burial included, the Speaker of the Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdullahi, Hajiya Silifat Sule, the Nasarawa State First Lady and Sen. Godiya Akwashiki (APC- Nasarawa North).
Others are Rep Jonathan Gaza (PDP), Rep Abdulmumin Ari (APC) and former deputy governor of the state, Hon Silas Agara.