Sunday, January 22, 2023

Strengthen “existing security measures” to Protect Life: Bishops in Nigeria to Government


Catholic Bishops in Nigeria’s Ibadan Ecclesiastical Province are urging the government to strengthen security measures so as to protect the life and properties of Nigerians.

In a statement shared with ACI Africa on Thursday, January 19 following their two-day meeting, the Catholic Bishops make reference to recent cases of insecurity in the West African country and underline the need for “new technology” in addressing the challenge.

“We urge the authorities to bolster existing security measures to safeguard life and property, to add new technology, and apprehend and decimate those who engage in such criminal activities in our region and all over the country,” the Catholic Church leaders in the statement following their meeting that concluded Tuesday, January 17.

The Catholic Prelates at the helm of Nigeria’s Ibadan Archdiocese and the Dioceses of Ekiti, Ilorin, Ondo, Osogbo, and Oyo say Nigerians have “a right to enjoy free and safe movement wherever they live and go and it is the sacred duty of the government to make this possible.”

In the two-page statement signed by the President and Secretary of the Ecclesiastical Province, Archbishop Gabriel Abegunrin and Bishop John Oyejola, respectively, the Catholic Church leaders say that adequate security is paramount as it will have an impact on the general elections scheduled for February 25. 

To the government at all levels, the Catholic Bishops say, “It is never too late to do the right thing because adequate security of life will have an impact on the integrity of the forthcoming general elections.”

They recall the cruel murder of Fr. Isaac Achi of the Catholic Diocese of Minna, saying the Cleric “has suffered the fate of many other Nigerians.”

They pray for the soul of the Priest who was murdered Sunday, January 15 following an attack on Sts. Peter and Paul Kaffin Koro Parish of Minna Diocese and other Nigerians whose murders have gone unannounced.

“May all the casualties of insecurity in Nigeria rest in perfect peace and may God comfort all the bereaved who mourn them,” the Bishops in Nigeria’s Ibadan Ecclesiastical Province say.

They add that despite the improvement of security in the southwest region of Nigeria through the setting up and sustaining of the Amotekun Corps and others, the threat of insecurity is still rampant.