From Maurice Okafor,Enugu
Seven days after Rev. Fr. Clement Rapuluchukwu Ugwu,the Catholic priest of St. Mark Catholic Church, Obinofia Ndiuno in Ezeagu Local Government Area of Enugu State was abducted by yet to be identified gun men in his parish , his lifeless body was discovered yesterday morning.
THE AUTHORITY gathered his abductors shot him on Wednesday,March 13,at about 9pm, and thereafter took him away in his Prado jeep to an unknown destination. But his lifeless body was discovered in a bush seven days after by mercenaries,who contacted the Church immediately.
His remains was eventually conveyed to Enugu and buried at the Catholic cemetry at Holy Ghost Cathedral,Enugu yesterday evening,after a requiem mass conducted by Most Revd Callistus Onaga,the Catholic Bishop of Enugu Diocese.
Speaking after his remains was laid to rest, Bishop Callistus Onaga called on the police to fish out the killers of his priest.
Bishop Onaga decried the spate of violent killings around the country, advising that Christians should intensified their prayers for the survival of the country.
He regretted that security agencies could not rescue Fr. Ugwu despite their assurances that they were closing on the kidnappers, while the abductors were making withdrawals from his account through his Automated Teller Machine Card.
Bishop Onaga while lamenting the loss said “All is not well in Enugu State. We should not continue to pretend about it while our people are killed everyday. Enugu State is not secured again. Criminals have shifted to Enugu State from Anambra while we said that Enugu is most secured.
“When father Ugwu was kidnapped we reported it to the police and since then I have visited police station three times yet they kept telling me we are closing on the kidnappers. I doubt they were doing anything because where the deceased body of Fr. Ugwu was found is not up to 20km from his house.”
The Director of Communication, Enugu Catholic Diocese, Rev. Fr. Benjamin Achi, called on the government of Enugu State to live up to it’s responsibility in protecting life and property.
He expressed worry that this is the first time a priest would be kidnapped inside the Church premises in the Diocese.
Efforts to get the Enugu state ploice angle of the story was not successful as at the time of filing this report.