Benue Killings: Perpetrators Acting On Instructions – Bishop Ezeokafor
By Nedum Noble
The Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev. Paulinus Ezeokafor, has expressed displeasure over the prolonged silence of the federal government in the recent killings of two Catholic priests and seventeen worshippers in Benue state.
The bishop alleged that the silence was an indication that the penetrators of the heinous crime acted on instructions.
Speaking in Awka, Anambra State during a peaceful march in protest of the death of the faithful, Ezeokafor, who was represented by the Chancellor of the diocese, Rev fr. Dr. Francis Chidume, regretted the federal government inability to defend the lives and property of the citizenry.
He said the protest, which coincided with the burial of the priests and parishioners, was in fulfillment of the directive of the Catholic Bishop Conference of Nigeria on the insecurity of lives and property of Nigerians.
“It is unfortunate that since the killings of the priests and parishioners, the President is yet to make any statement, proving that the so called Fulani herdsmen are acting on a written instruction.
“The protest which is going on simultaneously across the country, is also to remind the Buhari-led administration that the protection of lives and property of the citizenry is his constitutional responsibility, and anything short of that is failure on its part.
“We are engaging in a protest march envoking the power, mercy and intervention of God. We are here to let the whole world hear us concerning the blood of Christians, especially the Catholic faithful that are being shed regularly,” he decried.
Describing the actions as worrisome, the cleric said it was a calculated attempt targeted to wipe out the entire Christians from the face of Nigeria.
“That can never happen because God is with us and he abhors killing of any form,” he insisted.
The parishioners, in their large numbers, marched from the Alex Ekwueme square to the St. Patrick’s Cathedral Church, carrying placards with various inscriptions like “Christian killing should stop”, “Life is sacred, life is precious, defend it,” among others.
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