AFRICA/NIGERIA - Official death toll in Owo bombing rises to 40; new massacre in Kaduna state

Thursday, 9 June 2022 massacres   kidnappings   priests  

Abuja (Agenzia Fides) - The number of victims according to the official toll of the massacre perpetrated on Sunday June 5 in the church of Saint Francis Xavier in Owo (see Fides, 6/6/2022) has risen to 40. This was announced by the authorities of the State of Ondo, in the southwest of Nigeria, according to which the number of wounded is 61, with a total of 127 people affected by the terrorist command that acted with ruthless determination (see Fides, 8/6/2022). The governor of Ondo state has stated that there are plans to bury the victims in a common shrine. Meanwhile, news comes of another massacre on Sunday June 5 in the northern state of Kaduna, where 32 people were killed in a raid by Fulani herdsmen on villages in the Kajuru Local Government Area. The attack was carried out by Fulani terrorists armed with AK47 rifles on several motorcycles. The self-defense militias of the towns tried to resist the attack of the terrorist commando, but were overwhelmed. Witnesses at the scene also affirm that a helicopter fired on the villagers who were trying to resist the terrorist assault. Also in the state of Kaduna, on June 7, funerals were held in the absence of the body of Father Joseph Bako Aketeh, the priest who died in the hands of the kidnappers between April 18 and 20 (see Fides, 12/5/2022 ). The funeral was held in the church of St. John in Kudenda, where the priest had been kidnapped on March 8 by a commando that attacked the rectory (see Fides, 9/3/2022). His Exc. Monsignor Matthew Man-Oso Ndagoso, Archbishop of Kaduna, who conducted the funeral, expressed his hope that the remains of the poor priest may one day be recovered. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 9/6/2022)