CAN Mourns Catholic Priest, Baptist Pastor


    Paul Obi in Abuja

    The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) wednesday mourned the death of a Catholic Priest of Abuja Archdiocese, Rev. Fr. Michael Akawu, and Rev. Hosea Akuchi of Nigerian Baptist Convention in Rigassa, Kaduna State, who were killed by unknown gunmen.

    Akawu was the first Abuja indigenous Catholic Priest who was ordained last year, and posted as Assistant Parish Priest to Our Lady of Immaculate Conception Parish, Dobi, Gwagwalada Area Council.

    According to the CAN President, Rev. Supo Ayokunle, “The CAN commiserates with the leaderships of the Roman Catholic Church and the Nigerian Baptist Convention over the demise of two of their clerics who were killed by some unknown gunmen in Abuja and Kaduna State.

    “The late Akawu was reportedly shot dead by yet-to-be identified gunmen in Gwagwalada, Abuja, while shopping last Saturday evening. “Few hours later on August 21, 2018, according to informed sources, some hoodlums suspected to be Fulani terrorists attacked Nasara Baptist Church in Guguwa near Rigasa in Kaduna and shot Akuchi dead and took away his wife, Talatu Akuchi. Her whereabouts remain unknown and the criminals have demanded the sum of N5 million for her release.”

    Ayokunle explained that Akawu, who was ordained priest on February 4, 2017, by the Archbishop of Abuja, John Cardinal Onayeikan, was the first FCT indigenous Catholic priest to be ordained. CAN prayed to God to comfort and console the Roman Catholic Church in Nigeria, the Nigerian Baptist Convention, the churches where they were serving and their immediate families.

    CAN also called on the Nigeria Police and other relevant security agencies to do whatever it takes to bring the culprits to book and rescue the widow of the late Akuchi as soon as possible.

    “We once again call on our security agencies to be more pro-active and invest more on intelligence gathering with a view to preventing many of these crimes that are being committed before their watch undetected.

    “CAN also notes with pains and disappointment the state of insecurity in the country; nowhere is safe and secure, as terrorists, rampaging Fulani herdsmen, killer bandits, armed robbers, kidnappers and other hoodlums are operating unchecked while our security agencies are seemed busy with elections, forgetting that leaders are elected to rule over the living,” the Christians’ group stated.

    He stated that Nigeria’s security situation is reprehensible, unacceptable and condemnable, while calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to rejig the security system of the country for visible improvement in the security situation in the country.