Ernest Chinwo in Port Harcourt
The Rivers State Police Command has said from its initial findings, popular human rights activist and lawyer to the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ken Atsuete, was killed when he went to pick his neighbour who had escaped from suspected kidnappers.
The APC and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have been at daggers-drawn since news of the murder of Atsuete made the rounds last Monday.
While the APC said the state government and the PDP should be held liable because the slain Atsuete had announced he was going to expose how the PDP was parading a fake court order restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from releasing the result of Tai Local Government Area in the last rerun election, the PDP said the APC should allow the police do their job to unravel those responsible for his death.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Omoni Nnamdi (DSP), told THISDAY last night that the police have so far established that Atsuete’s murder was not premeditated as he actually met his death while playing the good neighbour.
Nnamdi said: “Ken Atsuete’s neighbour, Pastor Abba Emmanuel, was abducted on Sunday by unknown gunmen at his gate at Aluu. But the pastor later that night escaped from his abductors and called his family. They would have gone that night to pick him (the pastor) up but the time was too late and they decided to go early in the morning. As the only man in the yard, Atsuete decided to accompany Abba Emmanuel’s wife at about 5a.m. to pick up the pastor.
“It was in this process that Atsuete was shot in his car.”
Nnamdi however assured the public that the police would in no distant time unravel Atsuete’s killers as the state Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) has already swung into action.
“I can assure you that we will get and prosecute the killers as the state criminal investigation department is already on the matter,” he said.
THISDAY additionally gathered that the late Atsuete might have survived if he had received medical attention on time.
A source said he was rushed to the nearby University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital (UPTH) but could not get attention as the doctors were on strike.
“It was in the process of taking him to another hospital that he gave up, having lost so much blood,” the source said.