Former Nigerian Ambassador to Ukraine assassinated

2010/1/6 7:09:06
Nigerian Amb. Ignatius Ajuru presents credentials to Foreign Min. Yatsenyuk, Aug. 6, 2007 OBEHI, Nigeria, Jan. 5, 2010 (UBO) – Press reports originating in Nigeria say that a former diplomat, Ignatius
Hekaire Ajuru, whose diplomatic assignments included serving as Nigeria’s ambassador to Ukraine and Gabon has been shot dead. Ajuru’s term as ambassador to Ukraine included concurrent accreditation to Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. At the time of his death, Ajuru was serving as Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the Governing Council of the University of Jos in Nigeria. He has previously been chair of the governing council of the Rivers State College of Education, Port Harcourt, Rivers State. Ajuru was shot dead at Obehi, Abia state, in the eastern part of Nigeria on Monday, December 21 alongside his driver. The Nigeria News reported that “the killing was likely done by armed robbers.” However, the Nigerian Compass reported that Ajuru “…was shot dead on Sunday evening by people suspected to be assassins.” Ajuru’s police escort escaped injury. The Nation later reported that Abia State Commissioner of Police Jonathan Johnson said the motive for the killing was yet to be established, but the fact that the gunmen abandoned the ambassador’s vehicle after killing him, without removing a bag containing some money and other valuables, made the police suspicious that it could be an assassination. Johnson said Abia state was offering 2 million Nigerian Naira [about $27,000] for information leading to apprehension of Ajuru’s killers. The Governor of Rivers State, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, has appealed to the Nigeria Police Force, especially the Abia State Police Command, to double its efforts in combating crime at Obehi, which has reportedly become a major crime area in recent days. Amaechi, who happens to be of the same ethnic stock as the late elder statesman, blamed the porous security situation around the Abia axis of the Aba/Port Harcourt expressway. Amaechi particularly emphasized the level of insecurity around Obehie Community in Abia State on the highway, noting that four prominent Rivers state citizens had lost their lives in the recent past to bandits operating in the area. Ajuru was born March 25, 1944 in Isiokpo, Ikwere Local Government Area of Rivers State. Educated in Nigeria and England, he was the Marketing Manager, Eastern Bulkeen Limited. He was also the Chairman of the Rivers State Newspaper Corporation, Port Harcourt, publishers of the Nigerian Tide. Between 1993 and 1994, he was the Chairman of the defunct National Republican Convention, NRC. A founding member of the PDP, Ajuru was a governorship aspirant in Rivers State in 1999. He was a member of the International Personnel Academy, the Nigerian Institute of Management and the Chartered Institute of Marketing.
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