By Peter Duru, Makurdi
Metropolitan Archbishop of Abuja Catholic Archdiocese, His Grace, Rev. Ignatius Kaigama has condemned the series of abductions, persecution and killings of innocent Christians especially Catholic Priests in the country by terrorists describing the development as unfortunate and unacceptable.
Archbishop Kaigama spoke at the Episcopal Consecration and installation of Most Rev. Isaac Bundepuun Dugu as the second Bishop of Katsina-Ala Catholic Diocese, Benue state.
While lamenting the worsening insecurity in parts of the country, Archbishop Kaigama called for sustained prayers to end the development.
The Prelate who warned christians in the Diocese against tendencies that could bring about crisis in the church urged them to work in harmony with Bishop Dugu for the peace and development of the church.
The Cleric also expressed concern about the state of federal roads in Benue State and urged the state government to draw the attention of the Federal Government to the development for necessary action to fix the roads.
He said: “The roads are very bad, even the road to this place (venue of the event) is also bad. I urge Governor Samuel Ortom to take them to the Federal Government so that they can come and do them and even link them to my state in Taraba state so that when I retire I can drive on them back home.”
In a homily, the Apostolic Nuncio to Nigeria, Most Reverend Antonio Guido Filipazzi noted that the primary task of the Bishop was to promote unity among the people so that they would love God and follow his teachings, pointing out that “The Bishop’s mission is at the service of the unity of the Church and humanity.”
The Papal Nuncio who was the Principal Consecrator, discouraged divisions in the Church stressing that “If the Church is divided, the society cannot stand united.” He urged the faithful to collaborate with the new Bishop for the unity of the Diocese.
Governor Samuel Ortom in his remark, lauded the cordial relationship that exists between his administration and the church and pledged his continued support and partnership with the church for the development of the state.
He also acknowledged the deplorable condition of federal roads in the state especially the Gboko-Katsina road and promised to take the matter to the Federal Government.
Paramount ruler of the Tiv nation, HRM Prof. James Ayatse, commended Governor Ortom for ensuring the return of peace to the area known as the Sankera geopolitical axis of the state pointing out that before now the axis was a no-go-area due to the activities of criminals.
The monarch charged members of the church to give maximum support to the new Bishop to enable him effectively discharged his responsibilities.
Most Reverend Dugu in his acceptance speech, appreciated God and thanked the Holy Father, Pope Francis for finding him worthy of appointment promising to build on the legacies of his predecessor, the late Bishop Peter Adoboh.
The event attracted Catholic faithful and top government functionaries from within and outside the state.