A gang of unknown gunmen Tuesday stormed the Otuoke community of former President Godluck Jonathan, killing a soldier on guard at his courtyard in Ogbia local government area of Bayelsa state.
But three of the hoodlums were however felled in the duel as they made effort to break into the house.
Providing some insight into the attack, the former president said the gunmen attacked his country home because they wanted to steal a gunboat some 100 metres away from the residence.
A statement by his media aide, Ikechukwu Eze, he said: “A security post stationed near the Otuoke residence of former President Dr. Goodluck Jonathan in Bayelsa state was attacked by unknown gunmen early Tuesday morning.
“The hoodlums who came in about five engine boats stormed the security post located about 100 metres away from former President Jonathan’s residence in his hometown Otuoke by 1:30 am on Tuesday and attempted to take away a gunboat belonging to the military stationed at the creek beside the residence.
“They were, however, resisted by gallant soldiers who engaged them in a fire fight.
“The gunmen who couldn’t stand the firepower of the military were forced to beat a retreat.
“One soldier, unfortunately, lost his life in the fight while another was injured.
“The injured soldier who is currently receiving treatment at a medical facility in Yenagoa is in a stable state.
“The former president, who was not in Otuoke at the time of the attack, however, returned to his village early this morning to assess the situation.
“Dr. Jonathan promptly condemned the attack and reassured his people that there was no cause for alarm.
“The former president has also condoled with the family of the deceased soldier, the military and has urged the concerned security authorities to swing into action and bring the culprits to book”.
Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday has called his predecessor on the telephone to sympathise with him over the attack.
A statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, quoted Buhari as reassuring the former president of his safety and security as well as those of all Nigerians.
Shehu said: “President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday put a call to former President Goodluck Jonathan to sympathise with him following an attack by gunmen on his Otuoke, Bayelsa State country residence.
He expressed sadness over the “tragic and unfortunate attack,” during which claimed the life of a gallant soldier.
“While commending the soldiers on guard for bravely repelling the attack, the president condoled with family members as well as officers and men of the Nigerian Army over the loss of one of the guards.
“President Buhari assured that the protection of the life of the former leader and all citizens of the country will continue to be the major preoccupation of his administration,” the statement further said.
APC seeks probe
Also, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has demanded from security and intelligence agencies a swift, sweeping and thorough probe of the ‘shocking incident.’
The party, in a statement signed by its spokesman, Lanre Issa-Onilu, Tuesday in Abuja, said it joined other well-meaning Nigerians in condemning the attack in its entirety.
“We call on security agencies to fish out the perpetrators and their sponsors. We extend condolences to the family of the soldier who reportedly died in the attack. The party also wishes the other injured soldier a full and speedy recovery.”
Also, Senate President Ahmad Lawan has condemned the attack on the former president’s home.
Lawan described the attack as despicable, saying “the incident defies logic and should be condemned without reservation by all right-thinking Nigerians.
The Senate president called on the relevant security agency to get to the roots of the barbaric incident with a view to bringing those behind it to justice.
Lawan commended the security personnel on guard for their prompt response and bravery in foiling the dastardly intentions of the attackers and also commiserated with the family of the soldier who lost his life in the incident.