A two-time Federal House of Representatives aspirant in Delta State. Honourable Henry Junior Okokoyoh has escaped assassination attempts on his life in what observers insisted is politically motivated.
The latest attempt by gunmen who stormed his residence still have residents of his neighborhood living in fear.
Insinuations linking the attempts to kill him to politics, multiple sources contended was due to his rising political clout in the state, particularly in his constituency. Okokoyoh had twice contested the Okpe Ovwie and Sapele Federal House of Representatives seats on the platform of PDP.
Eyewitness accounts had it that the gunmen who stormed his residence around 11 PM on November 19, 2021, gained entrance into the house after shooting his security guard and firing several shots at the doors and windows adding that he was lucky to have escaped unhurt with his family and younger brother, Nicholas Okokoyoh.
Sources averred that Nicholas may have been included in the hit list because he is seen as a top aide to his brother honourable Henry Okokoyoh and he could inherit his elder brother’s political structure and still pose a huge threat to the political aspirations of some entrenched political big wigs in the constituency. This could however not be independently verified by Orijo Reporters.
“How he escaped with his life, his family and brother Nicholas was a miracle. The gunmen were about 5 in number and came in a Hilux van which made us unsuspecting of their mission until they started shooting at his building and shouting his name even as they cursed him. They held the whole neighborhood hostage for close to an hour. In fact, we thought they had killed everybody in the house going by the wreckage they left in their wake,” a neighbor who pleaded anonymity told our correspondent.
Continuing, he added that “We couldn’t believe our ears when news filtered in the next day that Henry escaped through a back door behind his house that led to a bush path.” and some few houses away from his street.
Numerous efforts to get Okokoyoh’s reaction to the latest attack was unsuccessful. When contacted, a top cop at the Sapele Divisional Police Station simply said “I heard of the incident, everybody in the community was aware, but he has not officially reported it at our station.
Orijo Reporters findings further revealed that Okokoyoh founded Impact Sapele Grassroots movement in 2019 after the general elections and has garnered widespread follower-ship among electorates in his constituency.
A source in the know told our correspondent that through Impact Sapele Grassroots Movement he has endeared himself to people in the area thus making him the candidate to beat come 2023 election. According to the source, “Okokoyoh is clearly the candidate to beat. His followership transcends our constituency and cut across party divide because of his antecedents and goodwill.
Henry Okokoyoh who started his political career with the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2015 later decamped to the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in 2018 in what many describe as controversial circumstances.
“He contested the House of Representatives seat for Okpe, Ovwie & Sapele federal constituency under APC and was schemed out even though he was the most popular choice. After the elections he was lured into PDP with a promise of the ticket. If he could bring his followership with him to the Party.
He did more than that as he facilitated mass defection of erstwhile APC big shots and members to PDP but the powers that be in APC were aggrieved. This attack may not be unconnected with his recent political moves to represent his people in the House of Representatives for the coming elections. the source who gave his name as Francis Oleh added.
Our correspondent further gathered that Okokoyoh returned to the PDP in 2018 and thereafter founded Impact Sapele Grassroots Movement through which he has facilitated numerous empowerment programs for indigent constituents of the area as well as awarding education scholarships for students in secondary and tertiary institutions.