April 17, 2024 12:46 pm
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Catholic Priest and Three Others Seized by Gunmen in Ebonyi State

Gunmen Kidnap Catholic Priest and Three Others in Ebonyi State

A Catholic priest, Rev. Fr. Joseph Azubuike, has been abducted in Ebonyi State, along with three other individuals. The incident occurred on Monday in Isu, Onicha Local Government Area of the state, near the priest’s residence.

The police authorities are yet to react to the incident, but the Catholic Diocese of Abakaliki has confirmed the abduction in a statement issued on Tuesday. Fr. Matthew Uzoma Opoke, the Chancellor of the diocese, revealed that Rev. Fr. Azubuike was taken by the gunmen while returning from his pastoral duties.

“Call for Prayers” – Diocesan Chancellor

The diocesan chancellor, in a statement titled “Call for prayers,” has called on all Catholic faithful to pray for the unconditional release of the priest. Fr. Opoke also mentioned that three other individuals were kidnapped alongside the priest, but their identities were not disclosed.

  1. Rev. Fr. Joseph Azubuike is the Parish Priest of St. Charles Parish, Mgbalaeze Isu in Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State.
  2. The abductors have made financial demands, but the diocese believes that with the power of prayer, the victims will be safely returned.
  3. The diocese seeks help from Mother Mary of priests and asks for the intercession of St. Joseph.

Ebonyi State is among the states in the South-East region that have been affected by the activities of gunmen. Other states facing similar challenges include Abia, Imo, Anambra, and Enugu. In recent years, armed gangs have increasingly been kidnapping people, including priests, for ransom. This has resulted in heightened insecurity, not only in the Northwest but also in other parts of the country.

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