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Man with pending land grab case against Pius Anyim escapes murder attempt again

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Mr. Friday Ovia, a Technical Assistant on Security to the Governor of Ebonyi State, and member of the Ovumnte community in Amagu Ishiagu has again escaped a murder attempt by thugs allegedly loyal to Chief Pius Anyim and led by Mr. Chinedu Nicholas Makwe (a Pharmacist and Director with the National Health Insurance Scheme and a brother to the member of the House of Representatives representing Ohaozara/Ivo Federal Constituency).

Mr. Friday Ovia

ElombahNews gathered that the attack on Mr. Friday Ovia took place at Amauzo, Amagu round the 5pm on the evening of Wednesday, the 10th March, 2021, while Mr. Friday Ovia was performing the funeral ceremony of his late mother.

It happened that as Mr. Friday Ovia, his elder brother and family members were attending to relatives and visitors who came to pay condolences and perform funeral rites, Mr. Chinedu Nicholas Makwe and eight armed thugs stormed into the venue of the funeral and disrupted the ceremony by firing gun shots into the air. People present at the ceremony ran for their lives, while the thugs got hold of Mr. Friday Ovia and Mr. Ogo Okeke who was with him and stabbed and macheted  them severally while also using heavy hammers to hit them on the head, joints and several other parts of their body.

When Mr. Friday Ovia became unconscious, Mr. Chindeu Nicholas Makwe ordered one of the thugs to run him over with the car so that it will look like an accident. Mr. Chinedu Makwe and his thugs then left when it appeared that Mr. Friday Ovia was no longer breathing.

Both Mr. Friday Ovia and Mr. Ogo Okeke were later rescued by relatives and taken to a nearby hospital after Mr. Chinedu Makwe and the thugs had departed the scene. Mr. Friday Ovia has remained unconscious and in intensive care at an undisclosed hospital since the attack.

The attack has been reported to the Divisional Police Command and the DSS in Ivo Local Government Area of Ebonyi State. However, Mr. Chinedu Makwe and the said thugs returned again to Mr. Friday Ovia’s house on the morning of 12th March, 2021 and searched every room in the house and left when they did not find Mr. Friday.

Recall that Mr. Friday Ovia is a member of the Ovumnte community who filed a law suit at the Ebonyi State High Court via Suit No: HSK/6/2020 against Chief Pius Anyim and Mr. Chinedu Nicholas Makwe for acts of land grabbing and malicious destruction of properties in Ovumnte land.

The community has earlier petitioned the Ebonyi State Commissioner of Police over the said acts of land grabbing. Mr. Friday Ovia is also one of the witnesses that saw Mr. Chinedu Nicholas Makwe physically assault Mrs. Orji on the 12th June, 2020 at her husband’s farm in Ovumnte, Ishiagu.

Following Mr. Friday Ovia’s testimony of the assault incident before the police, he has severally been threatened by Mr. Chindeu Nicholas Makwe who is a brother to the member of the House of Representatives representing Ohaozara/Ivo Federal Constituency. In what apparently seems to be a fulfillment of Mr. Chindeu Nicholas Makwe’s threats, on the morning of 16 June, 2020, Mr. Friday Ovia was arrested by SP. Nwornu Daniel, the then DPO of the Ivo Divisional Police Command on a trumped up charge after a black nylon bag was placed in front his house. Persons living in the neighborhood reported that they saw the Police van clearly packed at a near distance to Mr. Friday Ovia’s house before the two men who dropped the incriminating material were seen, and that the Police made the arrest shortly after the two men had left the scene.

Mr. Friday Ovia was later transferred by the DPO to the detention cells of the anti-robbery unit and later the anti-kidnapping unit of the Ebonyi State Police command at Abakaliki. He later regained his freedom after being severally tortured to recant his witness testimony against Mr. Chindeu Nicholas Makwe.

Again on Sunday, 27th September, 2020, Mr. Friday Ovia was severely assaulted by six men who attempted to kidnap and whisk him away in an ash colored Toyota Camry car. The assault took place at Amata, Ishiagu, in Ivo Local Government Area. Mr. Friday Ovia’s account of the attempted kidnap incident which was confirmed by eye witness reports disclose that he was trailed by three men on a Qulink motor cycle who accosted and assaulted him while the ash colored Toyota Camry car approached and three more men who were armed with guns joined in  the assault.

They attempted to force Mr. Friday Ovia into the ash colored Toyota Camry car after inflicting grave wounds on parts of his body. Eye witnesses including villagers and bike men who observed the incident shouted for help which apparently made the kidnappers to flee. Prior to the kidnap attempt on 27th September, 2020, eye witnesses saw Mr. Chinedu Nicholas Makwe on Saturday 26th September, 2020, driving slowly on several occasions with his official car around Mr. Friday Ovia’s house in Amagu, Ishiagu.

Also, on 3rd February, 2021, Mr. Friday Ovia and Mr. Ogo Okeke were allegedly beaten to the point of death by Chief Pius Anyim’s thugs at the Ivo Local Government Council headquarters, while other members of the Ovumnte were inflicted with grave injuries and their cars, motorcycles and bicycles destroyed.

This particular incident took place in the presence of Chief Onyebuchi Ogbadu, the Executive Chairman of Ivo Local Government, whom Chief Pius Anyim’s thugs also mobbed and seized his phones when he attempted to record the incident. The February attack took place at a meeting called by the Council Boss over the ongoing Ovumnte Land Grab Case against Chief Pius Anyim and which Ovumnte Land Owners and Chief Pius Anyim’s representatives were invited.

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