REWIND: In 2014, suspected herdsmen attacked Governor Suswam’s convoy
On Saturday, gunmen attacked the convoy of Samuel Ortom, governor of Benue, while on a visit to a farm at Tyo Mu along Makurdi-Gboko road.
Ortom said the armed men, numbering about 15, were suspected to be herdsmen.
He said the gunmen trailed his convoy to the river bank where he was on foot with his security details and opened fire on them.
The attack on Ortom comes a week after Eunice, wife of Ibe Aghanya, a retired commissioner of police, was killed by unknown gunmen in the state.
LIKE ORTOM, LIKE SUSWAM
In March 2014, Gabriel Suswam, who was Benue governor at the time, was involved in a similar incident.
Suswam, who is currently a senator representing Benue north-east, was attacked by suspected herdsmen on his way to Guma LGA of the state.
The former governor had visited the council on a fact-finding mission following the persistent invasion of the area by hoodlums.
Suswam’s convoy was attacked at Tse-Akenyi, which led to an exchange of gunshots between his security guards and the herdsmen.
Speaking after the attack, Suswan had asked residents to defend themselves against gunmen.
“I salute each and every one of you for your courage and steadfastness throughout this period. This is beyond the herdsmen, this is real war,” he had said.
“On my way to this place, they exchanged gunshots with us for over one hour before we were able to come here.
“My people are being killed, butchered and their homes destroyed. So, if the security agents, especially the military, cannot provide security for us we will defend ourselves.”
SUSWAM WAS FORTUNATE — BUT HIS BROTHER WASN’T
Although Suswam was lucky to escape the attempt on his life in March 2014, his brother was not so fortunate when gunmen attacked him three weeks ago.
Terkula Suswam, elder brother to the former governor, was shot by gunmen on March 2.
He was attacked while supervising the repairs of his plaza in Anyiin LGA of the state.
According to the police, the gunmen drove in a Toyota Camry vehicle when they shot Terkula.
At the time, Ortom had directed security operatives to apprehend the killers and ensure that justice is served.
“The killers of Chief Terkura Suswam, elder brother to the Senator representing Benue North East, Senator Gabriel Suswam, must be apprehended and brought to justice,” Ortom had said.
Three weeks later, it was the governor’s turn to come under attack.