Sunday, August 14, 2022

Dumebi Kachikwu decries widespread killing, abduction of Catholic priests by bandits

He insisted that the ugly development must be urgently nipped in the bud by the relevant security.

• July 21, 2022
Catholic priests and Dumebi Kachikwu
Catholic priests and Dumebi Kachikwu

Presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress Dumebi Kachikwu has decried the upsurge in the attacks of Catholic priests in the country, noting that 18 of them have either been abducted or killed since January 2022.

Mr Kachikwu, in a statement in Lagos on Thursday, described the development as unacceptable and an unprovoked aggression against a section of the population dedicated to the service of God and humanity.

He insisted that the ugly development must be urgently nipped in the bud by the relevant security.

According to him, on June 26, a Catholic priest in Edo, Rev. Fr. Christopher Odia, was abducted and later murdered.

He said the killing of Mr Odia was preceded by the abduction and killing of a Kaduna State-based Catholic priest, Rev. Fr. Vitus Borogo, on June 25 by suspected terrorists.

He disclosed that on July 6, the priest presiding at Holy Ghost Parish, Eke-Olengbeche, Rev. Fr. Peter Amodu, was kidnapped by armed men along Otukpo Ugbokolo road, Okpokwu Local Government Area of Benue.

Mr Kachikwu said the latest incident was the killing of Rev. Fr. John Cheitnum, after he and his colleague, Rev. Fr.  Donatus Cleopas, were kidnapped by bandits on July 16, 2022 by suspected bandits in Lere Local Government Area of Kaduna State.

“Fr. Cleopas was later released after an alleged payment of an undisclosed sum as ransom.

“Fr. Cheitnum was the Director of Communications at the Catholic Diocese of Kafanchan before he was abducted and subsequently killed,” he said.

He noted that Fr. Cheitnum was also the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Jema’a LGA of the state.

He said it was regrettable that over 3,478 Nigerians were reportedly killed with 2,256 abducted in seven months from  December 2021 and June 15, 2022.

According to him, a statement by the Church in Need, a global Catholic Charity Organisation, said: “at least 18 priests have been kidnapped in Nigeria since the beginning of 2022, five in the first week of July alone. Although most were released unharmed, three were killed.”

Mr Kachikwu urged relevant security agencies to rise up to the challenge of insecurity in the country and ensure adequate security of Nigerians, especially Priests of the Catholic faith who had not only become vulnerable but an endangered species. 

(NAN)

We have recently deactivated our website's comment provider in favour of other channels of distribution and commentary. We encourage you to join the conversation on our stories via our Facebook, Twitter and other social media pages.

More from Peoples Gazette

Father Godfrey Gopep

Faith

2023: Christians must take deliberate actions not just wait on God, Catholic priest charges 

The priest challenged the people to put ethnic, regional and religious sentiments aside and vote for persons that meant well for the country.

NationWide

Illegal Mining: Ministry short-staffed, underfunded, says official

Mr Muhammed said more staff, such as mining engineers, geologists among others, are also needed to reach all the hinterland where mining activities are going on.

NDLEA spokesman Femi Babafemi

Lagos

Crystal Meth concealed in smoked fish consignment intercepted at Lagos airport

Mr Babafemi said that the drugs were concealed in heads of fishes packed in cartons for export to Dubai, the United Arab Emirate.

Hot news Home top

Customs to deploy drones for surveillance at Nigeria’s borders: Spokesman 

Customs Spokesman Timi Bomodi said the technology would help tackle the menace of smuggling.

Nigerian Customs Officers display confisticated drugs

States

Customs intercepted 234.5 tonnes of fertiliser, other contrabands at Cameroon border: Comptroller

The comptroller listed other items to include 22 vehicles; 1,500 sachets of Tramadol tablet, 392 bags of foreign rice and 70 bags of unpeeled foreign rice.

Katsina State House of Assembly

Education

Katsina Assembly pledges to pass bill on increased women participation in education

“So, the bill on providing 35 per cent positions for women participation in decision making in the education system will not be exceptional.