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Gunmen kidnap Catholic priest in Anambra

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Gunmen have kidnapped Reverend Father Christian Ike, a Catholic priest based in Anambra State.

The abduction took place on Sunday at Amagu junction in the Ndiokpaleke area of Ajali community, located in Orumba North Local Government Area.

According to the PUNCH, the priest was returning from an early morning Mass at St. Michael Catholic Church, accompanied by two other individuals.

As they were traveling, their vehicle was stopped by armed men operating in three cars. While the other two people managed to escape, the gunmen took Father Ike and some personal belongings from the vehicle.

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A source at the scene said, “The priest and two other persons were returning from St. Michael Catholic Church, where they attended morning service. On getting to Amagu Junction, their vehicle was double-crossed by armed men operating in three vehicles. While the other two escaped, the criminals took away the priest and some personal belongings.”

This incident marks the second kidnapping of a priest in Anambra State in the last two months. On May 15, Reverend Father Basil Gbuzuo was kidnapped near Onitsha and was released weeks later after a ransom was paid.

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Confirming the latest abduction, Anambra State police spokesman SP Tochukwu Ikenga said, “Anambra State Police Command received the information of the abduction of Rev Father Christian Ike and has deployed its intelligence and operational assets of the Command for possible rescue unhurt.”

Ikenga provided more details about the incident, stating, “Eyewitness accounts revealed that at 10:30 am on 16/6/2024, the priest and two others were returning from St. Michael Catholic Church Ndiokpaleke where they attended morning service. Along Amagu Junction, they were double-crossed by armed men operating in three vehicles. While the other two escaped the scene, the criminals took away the priest and some personal belongings.”

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He added that the police are actively working to rescue the priest and arrest the assailants.

“The Command has activated its intelligence and operational assets for possible arrest of the assailants and rescue unhurt of the priest. Further developments shall be communicated as they unfold,” Ikenga assured.

 

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