By Nathan Nwakamma
Dei was shot along with Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader in Oweikorogha, Southern Ijaw Local Government Area, Mr Seidougha Taribi, while in the latter’s residence waiting for the outcome of the elections in the ward.
Taribi died on the spot, but Dei, who was taken for dead by the gunmen, allegedly in military uniform, survived and was rushed to the hospital, where he reportedly died on Sunday night.
Dei’s demise was confirmed in a statement in Yenagoa, on Monday, by the Director, Corporate Communications, Governor’s Office, Chief Nathan Egba-Ologo.
According to him, the photographer died after battling to survive the lethal wounds from the gunshots in a Yenagoa hospital.
Egba-Ologo called on relevant security agencies to investigate the activities of various security agencies and bring the culprits of the dastard act to book.
He said that the state was mourning the unfortunate murder of Taribi and Dei as a result of the brigandage that rocked the parts of the state during the elections.
He called on authorities of the Nigerian Army and other security agencies to prevent brigandage and a breakdown of law and order in the area ahead of Saturday’s Governorship and House of Assembly polls.
Egba-Ologo urged the agencies to adhere to their constitutional responsibility of ensuring that there was adequate security for lives and property in the country at all times.
Gov. Seriake Dickson had on Feb. 24, alleged that Dei and the PDP stalwart were shot dead by the military.
Dickson alleged that the military colluded with some politicians to perpetrate the violence, which he said, characterised the previous day’s elections in the state.
But, Spokesman of 16 Brigade, Nigerian Army, Yenagoa, Major Jonah Danjuma, denied the allegation and said that the army was not responsible for the incident.
He explained that troops of the brigade had conducted an operation in Ikebiri community, in Southern Ijaw, different from where the photo-journalist and party chieftain were reportedly shot.
”We had no such incident; troops of 5 Battalion, 16 Brigade, Nigerian Army, on the election day, arrested 15 armed men suspected to be political thugs at Ikebiri 1 in Southern Ijaw LGA.
“It was a successful operation that led to the recovery of large cache of arms, ammunition and other items.
“This feat was achieved as a direct response by vigilant troops in Operation SAFE CONDUCT 2019 in 16 Brigade Area of Responsibility.” Danjuma had said.
Also Spokesman of the Joint Military Task Force deployed to Niger Delta, Major Abdullahi Ibrahim, said that the command neither deployed men to the community nor had operations at Oweikorogha. (NAN)