…Condemns Killing of Priests Across Nigeria.
“Catholic priests are Christ’s representatives on earth. Killing them amounts to killing Christ a second time.” Bishop Paulinus Ezeokafor
“Muslim-Muslim ticket is unacceptable in a secular state like Nigeria, it is the height of insensitivity and wickedness.”
By Charles Edet
His Lordship, Most Reverend Paulinus Ezeokafor, the Catholic Bishop of Awka Dioceses, has condemned and decried the abduction and killing of priests in the country. Bishop Ezeokafor, who made his feeling known to journalists on Sunday, frowned at the development, emphasized that whoever kills a priest, has killed Christ for the second time.
He said that those behind the ungodly act, have tacitly declared war against the Catholic Church, as they target priests, religion and laity.
His Lordship said, “Catholic priests are Christ’s representatives on earth. Killing them amounts to killing Christ a second time. Catholic priests should be respected. They made the greatest sacrifice on earth: no wife, no children, no heir, nobody to succeed them when they are gone. What other sacrifice is greater or costlier than that? “ he queried.
He added, “You are abducting and killing them because they are doing Christ’s work on earth? What wrong have they done? It is really abominable to maim a priest. Why go after a hapless servant of God? Someone who has left everything for the sake of God’s people. Priests deserve to be protected, encouraged and motivated.
The Bishops stated that the cries of the murdered priests will be avenged by God, he urged the government to tread carefully with the situation, he alleged that they were docile over the increasing killings and adoption of Catholic Priests in the Country.
“Their cries will reach the heavens and the heavens will fight their battles. The Nigerian Government should be very careful.”
“Their unusual silence over these killings and abduction of Catholic priests simply shows that they are enjoying it. They should remember that God’s anger will definitely descend on Nigeria’s government if it continues to play the ostrich.
‘I am seriously troubled. I am in pain. I cannot keep quiet. I will continue to talk. Catholic priests should be appreciated for leading in everything good. They sacrificed their all. They are not after ministerial appointments or contracts. Why go after them?’ Bishop Ezeokafor queried.
Speaking on the decision to field a Muslim-Muslim ticket by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Ezeokafor said it was unacceptable in a secular state like Nigeria, describing it as height of insensitivity and wickedness.
“You cannot come to a state like Nigeria with many different religions and be talking about Muslim-Muslim ticket. Are they saying that there is no competent Christian in the north? I’m sure there are many of them, even the Secretary of the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, is a Christian. They choose to ignore him and many others Christians in the North.
“There must be balance in everything. These are some of the things that are causing so much agitation here and there. Nigerians should rise and condemn it. Nigeria is not a Moslem country. We have two major religions; Christianity and Islam. There are others too. Why settle for one religion if you do not have a hidden agenda?,” he said.