June 17, 2024

Another Catholic priest kidnapped in Anambra

Another Catholic priest kidnapped in Anambra

By Nwabueze Okonkwo

Barely a month after a Catholic priest, Rev. Fr. Basil Gbuzuo was abducted by unknown gunmen suspected to be ransom kidnappers, another Catholic priest, Rev. Fr.  Christian Ike has equally been kidnapped by unknown gunmen.

Rev. Fr. Gbuzuo was abducted on May 15, this year in Onitsha, the commercial city of Anambra state, while Rev. Fr. Ike was kidnapped last Sunday, June 16 at Amagu Junction, Ndiokpalaeke near Ajalli in Orumba North Local Government Area of the state.

While Fr. Gbuzuo was released some weeks later after some undisclosed amount of money was paid to the abductors as ransome, Fr. Ike’s abductors are yet to contact his relations or his parishioners.

Although the reason for his abduction has not yet been ascertained, but eyewitnesses in the area, said the priest was returning from St. Michael’s Catholic Church where he and two others attended an early morning Mass when the vehicle he was moving in, was double-crossed by the kidnappers.

According to the source, “On getting to Amagu Junction, their vehicle was double-crossed by armed men operating in three vehicles, but the two others who were inside the same vehicle with Fr. Ike barely managed to escape the scene, while the criminals took away the priest and some personal belongings of the escaped occupants in the vehicle.”

Confirming the incident, the Anambra State police spokesman, SP Tochukwu Ikenga, told newsmen on phone that the command has heard about the incident and has deployed its intelligence and operational assets for his possible rescue unhurt.

Ikenga said, “Anambra State Police Command received the information of the abduction of Rev Father Christian Ike and has deployed its intelligence and operational assets of the Command for possible rescue unhurt.

“To this end, the Command has activated its intelligence and operational assets for possible arrest of the assailants and rescue unhurt of the priest and further development shall be communicated as it unfolds”.