Popular Broadcaster Killed by Suspected Cultist on Christmas Eve

A staff of the Independent Television and Radio, Hillary Nosa Odia, has been shot dead by suspected cultists around 2nd East Circular in Benin City.

The late Odia was said to have left the office at about 4:00pm, on Sunday, while the news of his death reportedly filtered into the ITV premises later in the night to the surprise of those who worked with him that day.

A colleague of his said the killing was as a result of cult clashes around the Esigie area, Off East Circular Road, adding that three others were also shot on the day Odia was killed.

He added that the deceased’s brother was also killed in similar fashion last year.

The colleague described the late broadcaster as jovial, hardworking and easy to work with, while calling on the police to unravel the cause of his death and apprehend the suspects.

“Late Odia closed from work at 4pm on December 24. Unfortunately, we heard of his death later, and it was a very big shock to the staff of ITV. His brother was also killed in a similar fashion last year, and I heard that the December 24 killing was due to cult clashes. He was a jovial person, easy to work with, hardworking. I hope the police will apprehend his killers soon.

“I also heard that he was trying to quit his own house at Upper Mission Extension and rent an apartment along the airport, while he also wrote an exam on Saturday morning, at Edo State Polytechnic in Usen, where he was taking a course,” the source said.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Edo State Council, has commiserated with the management and staff of ITV over the death of Odia.

A statement signed by the Chairman of the union, Comrade Festus Alenkhe, and the Secretary, Andy Egbon, charged security agencies in the state, especially the Nigeria Police, to unravel the circumstances surrounding the murder of Odia.

The statement prayed for the repose of the soul of the fallen colleague and urged his family to take solace in the fact that he will be remembered on the positive side of history. Besides, the statement charged Nigeria journalists to investigate the incident of Hillary’s death and, as well, ensure adequate reportage of the killing.

Confirming the incident, spokesman of the Edo State Police Command, Chidi Nwabuzor, said information was sketchy at the time of this report and promised to give details of the incident tomorrow.

“I can confirm that the killing took place. Information is sketchy now, but details would be revealed tomorrow after preliminary investigation,” Nwabuzor said.