The deputy registrar of Spiritan University Nneochi, Fr Chinedu Nwadike, was kidnapped. He was taken last Friday along the Ummunochi-Ihube road, nearby the Enugu-Okigwe road. He was taken along with a seminarian, Brother Emmanuel Nwafor. After their abduction, their kidnappers have demanded a ransom of N50m. according to a family source, ‘Rev. Fr. Dr. Chinedu Nwadike (Cssp), from Umuezeanoruo Eziama, Nkwerre, LGA, Imo State and a young Seminarian, Emmanuel Nwafor (pre Postulant), were on Friday, 12th August, 2022, kidnapped on their way to Enugu State, Umunnochi area, along Enugu-Okigwe Road. Both are members of the Holy Ghost Congregation missionaries, living their lives of sacrifice and selflessness in service to a better society. he is currently the deputy registrar of SUN (Spiritan University Nneochi).” another person has said “Fr. Chinedu Nwadike was kidnapped Friday, August 12,2022, at Nneochi area, shortly after driving out of the gate of this university, Spiritan University Nneochi (SUN), on his way to Enugu. This is the second attempt to kidnap him in very recent time. in the first attempt, they shot directly at him but he managed to escape, but his time they succeeded and are said to be demanding a ransom of N50m. curiously a military check point is located around the place.” the family has said, through the priest younger brother Chikezie, that they are praying for his safe return, and that of the seminarian accompanying him. he was later released on Monday 15 August. In a statement released by the leadership of the Spiritans in Nigeria, Fr. Vitakus Anusionwu announced the return of the priest with joy, “We thank you for answering our call to storm heaven with your prayers for safety and a speedy release. Your prayers have been really effective”.


Christians in Nigeria are up to 10 times more likely to die from religious violence than Muslims. This is according to a report by the Observatory for Religious Freedom in Africa (ORFA). The report states that Christians died at a rate of 9.6 times higher in jihadist related violence per capita than Muslims, in the period observed between October 2019 and September 2020. In the next twelve month, October 2020 to September 2021, that ratio decreased slightly to 7.8 times more than Muslims. On top of this, Christians are 59 times more likely to be abducted than Muslims by extremists, including groups such as Boko Haram in the 2019-2020 reported period. However, in a dramatic decrease was reported in the 2020-2021 reporting period, with the abduction rate becoming 4.1 times more likely. according to Dr David Landrum, director of advocacy at Open Doors UK and Ireland, “Christians are being disappropriately targeted because they are Christians. The ratio is amplified further by the fact that, in the north and central belt where most of the attacks are carried out, Christians are in a minority-with Muslims a significant majority. This makes the comparative analysis of less attacks on Muslims and others starker and confirms the religious nature of the violence.”


Suspects have been arrested in connection with the attack on a Catholic Church in Owo, Ondo State. On 5 June, Pentecost Sunday, a massacre was carried out in St Francis of Assisi Parish in Owo, killing 40 people, and until recently, there were no arrests, although the blame had been laid at the feet of the insurgent group known as Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP). However, according to chief of defense staff General Leo Irabor, that has charged. At the time of the arrests, he had this to say: “It was my intention to present them to the public, but because of the investigation continuing, I had to change my mind. In due course the world will see them and others who are behind other daring attacks in the country. The Director of Defense Information, Major General Jimmy Akpor, has named the two suspects as Al-Qasim Adris and Adbulhaleem Idris, who were arrested during a joint operation with the police, at Omialafara, Ose LGA in Ondo State. In a released statement, the Major General says, “Recall that the Chief of Defense Staff during his parlay with media executives and editors yesterday, Tuesday 9 August 2022, informed of the arrest of 4 terrorists among those who carried out the attack on St Francis Catholic Church, Owo, on 5 June 2022. They were arrested through a combined operation by military and DSS personnel at Eika, Okehi, LGA, and Kogi State on 1 August 2022. Those arrested include Idris Abdulmalik Omeiza (a.k.a bin Malik), Momoh Otohu Abubaker, Aliyu Yusuf Itopa and Auwal Ishaq Onimisi. Barely few hours after the disclosure by the CDS of the arrest of four of the Owo Catholic Church attackers, two additional ISWAP terrorists, who were also connected to the attack on the church were apprehended at Omialafara (Omulafa), Ose LGA, Ondo State, yesterday, 9 August 2022. The arrests were made through the collaborative effort by military and DSS personnel. The suspects are Al-Qasim Idris and Abdulhaleem idris.” Abdulhaleem, in particular, along other ISWAP commanders, is accused of being connected to attacks on military targets in Okene, Okene LGA, and Kogi State, which led to casualties.




In a wide-ranging interview, the Archbishop of Abuja, Ignatius Kaigama, has gone into great depth about the general situation in the country. Abuja is the capital city, and it should be the safest place to be. This is where the President lives, we didn’t think things could happen in Abuja in this manner. We are not sure what could happen next, when or from where the attackers can come, because they can do anything. The situation is very serious.”

“This is much organised; it is not something that happens by chance. Some years ago, there were bomb attacks. But there has never been a really serious threat, as we are witnessing now. Next year there are elections, and people want power, they are doing everything they can. One would have thought that as a result of the worsening security situation, senators, and representatives at the National Assembly would be feverishly seeking solutions to the problems, but instead they gave themselves six weeks break. After the attacks they left, just last week!” even when politicians in the country are present, they are not accessible to their constituents on a regular enough basis. “They receive their salaries, their privileges, but they are less concerned about the overall welfare of the people. Since I arrived in Abuja as archbishop, I have been to nearly every village, but when I mention the names, the politicians or political leaders don’t seem to know them. And you would imagine that they would come and ask you what you found out, where did you go, what did you see? But no. They are not available. They say they are busy. People are suffering, but the leaders simply care more about their personal welfare and official privileges. I am hoping this next election will be free, fair and transparent, and will produce leaders who are selfless, people-oriented and capable of genuine dialogue”. On the issue of the present religious tension in the country between Muslims and Christians, the archbishop was very careful in his choice of words- “We cannot generalise by simply saying that Christians are persecuted, because in the governing party there are Christians. But persecution is not just about killing people with knives, it is about manipulating things in favour of one group”.

“There is subtle persecution, which is even more dangerous. It is done in such a way that you cannot say they are really killing Christians, they have not pushed the Christians away, but the way the Government carries on you can be sure the Christians are not favoured. There is no equity. We are a country that is more or less 50-50, so there should be equal distribution of resources, of opportunities, and people should feel included in sensitive political, economic or security positions.”




On Sunday, along the same Okigwe-Enugu road area that Fr Nwadike was kidnapped from last week, four Reverend Sisters met the same fate. The four sisters were on their way to Sunday morning Mass when they were taken. The four sisters have been named as: Sr Johannes Nwodo, Sr Christabel Echemazu, Sr Liberata Mbamalu and Sr Benita Agu. the sisters belonged to the congregation of the Sisters of Jesus the Saviour. In a statement released by the Secretary-General of the congregation, Sr Zita Ihedoro, the congregation asks for prayers for the safe return of the religious sisters, “Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, it is with great pain that we bring to your notice the kidnapping of four of our sisters mentioned above. The sad event of their abduction occurred around Okigwe-Umulolo area this morning (Sunday) shortly after the sisters were on their way to thanksgiving mass of our sister. We implore for intense prayer for their quick and safe release. May Jesus the savior listen to our prayers and may our mother Mary intercede for the unconditional release of our dear sisters.”







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