Unknown gunmen on Monday night stormed the residence of Professor Godswill Obioma, strangling him in what his wife suspected to be an assassination.
“The assassins came in and killed him and left without taking anything,” Elizabeth Obioma told Peoples Gazette by telephone on Tuesday morning.
Weeping profusely, Mrs Obioma said her husband had just returned to Minna from a trip to Abuja when the armed men, lurking in his compound, descended on him and strangled him.
A police spokesman did not immediately return a request seeking comments about the development.
Mr Obioma had been facing attempts to remove him from office as the head of NECO, a prominent examination body run by the Nigerian government.
Mr Obioma, 67, was appointed head of NECO barely a year ago on May 14, 2020. He hailed from Abia state.
The incident came barely a day after Ahmed Gulak, a top politician of the ruling APC, was gunned down in Owerri, raising widespread fears of insecurity.
NECO later released a statement claiming Mr Obioma died after a brief illness, but his wife and other family members insisted he was assassinated by men who stormed his official residence.
At about 11:00 a.m., the police in Minna initially released a statement via WhatsApp claiming Mr Obioma died of heart ailments in Abuja, but summarily deleted it and said an update would be issued.