Killing of Minna Catholic Priest, abduction of 35 Katsina Christians:- Christian leaders haven’t done enough- Says HURIWA

Prominent civil rights advocacy group-HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA) said Christian leaders in Nigeria have so far failed to speak out sufficiently and has not adopted effective steps including boycotting all consultative meetings with President Muhammadu Buhari to compel the Federal government to check the increasing waves of jihadists targeted attacks.

HURIWA spoke specifically on the attack on Sunday morning at the residence of the Catholic Bishop of Paikoro which led to the burning to death of Reverend Father Isaac Achi of St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Paikoro local government area of Niger State, the abduction on Saturday night of the Parish Priest of Saint George Catholic Church Omu Ekiti in Oye LGA of Ekiti State Reverend Father Michael Oloinlade and the invasion and subsequent abduction of 35 worshipper at the New Life for all Church in Kankara LGA of Katsina State on Sunday morning.

HURIWA which classified these serial attacks as coordinated Jihad against Christian faith in Nigeria, expressed disappointment with the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria and the Christian Association of Nigeria for over indulging the President Muhammadu Buhari even in the face of his government’s deliberate failure to crush the terrorists who for the past seven years have specifically targeted Christians and have succeeded in destroying hundreds of Churches, kidnapping many Christians on gunpoint and killing hundreds of Christians just for exercising their fundamental freedom of religion. HURIWA said the last year’s vicious attack by ISWAP at the Catholic Church in Owo Ondo State which left over 50 worshippers dead is still fresh just as the Rights group said the Christian leaders have failed to hold the President to account.

HURIWA which condemned these attacks and killings of members and Priests of the Christian faith, faulted both the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) and the Christian Association of Nigeria for continuing to do business with the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari who has consistently failed to stop the systematic attacks of Churches and the killings of Christians just as the Rights group said it was inexplicable how the Archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Abuja accepted a national award from President Muhammadu Buhari and the Catholic Bishops have only recently held a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari and were seen sharing banters and smiling broadly.

HURIWA recalled that the Police Command in Niger State North Central Nigeria, has confirmed an attack on the residence of the Catholic Bishop of Paikoro, Rev. Father Isaac Achi of St. Peters and Paul Catholic Church, in Paikoro Local Government Area of the State.

A statement by DSP Wasiu Abiodun, the spokesperson of the Police Command in Niger State, says “armed bandits invaded the Parish residence of the Rev. Father and set the house ablaze which consumed the Rev Father “.

DSP Abiodun equally said a colleague of the Rev. Father, Father Collins was equally shot on the shoulder while trying to escape from the scene.

He said the lifeless body of Father Isaac was recovered while Father Collins was rushed to the hospital for treatment when the Police tactical teams attached to Kaffin-Koro Division stormed the scene.

“The hoodlums had escaped before the arrival of the team.”

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