AFRICA/NIGERIA - A Jesuit kidnapped in southern Nigeria

Friday, 21 April 2017 kidnappings  

Abuja (Agenzia Fides) - A Jesuit has been kidnapped in southern Nigeria: we are talking about Fr. Samuel Okwuidegbe, a 50-year-old Nigerian Jesuit, who was kidnapped on April 18, on the road connecting Benin City to Onitsha.
According to the information gathered by "La Croix", Fr. Okwuidegbe was to lead a retreat 150 miles from the spirituality center led by him, where he lives with three confreres. His car was found by the police, who are still investigating. "At the moment we do not have much detail.
Rigobert Kyungu Musenge, the Regional Secretary of the Jesuits for Africa and Madagascar reveals that two other people were abducted along with Fr. Okwuidegbe. "We do not think he was kidnapped" he stresses.
In 2016, several Catholic priests were kidnapped in Nigeria, especially in the southern regions. Don Sylvester Onmoke, President of the Nigeria Catholic Diocesan Priests Association (NCDPA), defined "the recent wave of priests and religious kidnapped as an assault on the Church" (see Fides 07/07/2016). (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 21/4/2017)