Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State has reacted to the murder of Ahmed Gulak on Sunday.
The former political adviser to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan was on his way to the Sam Mbakwe Cargo Airport.
Uzodinma said he did not deserve to die the way he did and vowed that the perpetrators will pay.
Security agencies have indicted the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) for the assassination.
In a broadcast on Monday, Uzodimma said the pain of losing a person, the horror of holding a family member in final moments and the anger of someone being so reckless that their bullet destroyed a life, are emotions no individual should ever have to endure.
He sympathized with the families of those who lost their lives through stray bullets “during this period”.
“The death of this compatriot is a personal loss to me because he was an invaluable friend and brother whose sense of justice, fairness and uprightness endeared him to me. I was shocked to my marrows when the sad news of his callous murder was broken to me.
“I was getting ready to go to church when the sad news came and I could not attend the service again. It was simply one of the most devastating news I have had in my life and I am yet to recover from the shock. It remains a puzzle to me why anyone would want to murder him in this gruesome and vicious manner.
“Alhaji Ahmed Gulak was in Imo State for a national assignment. He came to Owerri with the Senate Committee on Constitutional Amendment. Being a humble man, he chose to travel incognito according to his friend who was with him. Someone must have trailed him from the hotel to the airport. That is exactly why his gruesome murder appears to be a clear case of political assassination.
“According to reports by the police, he was shot in cold blood and the assailants did not remove a pin from him. It is most benumbing that people chose to waste such innocent blood in such a dastardly and cowardly manner.
“Let me make it very clear that everything will be done by security agencies to find those who murdered Gulak and their sponsors. They will not by the grace of God escape their deserved punishment. This is not in our character as Ibos, not in our tradition nor in our culture. We must condemn this callous act.”
The governor urged everybody to exercise restraint and allow the police to continue with their investigations.
“On our part as a government, we are not sparing any effort in ensuring that the murderers of this patriot are quickly arrested and prosecuted for their evil deeds. Imo people are very hospitable. The events of the last few weeks do not represent who we truly are.
“I believe that the ongoing police investigations will uncover the whole truth; it is common knowledge that those who are innocent need not be afraid. But the guilty will never go scot-free, certainly not in this instant case.”