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Ebonyi councillor’s brothers attack Catholic priest

From SAMSON AKPU, Abakaliki

Brothers to the councillor representing Nkomoro Ward, in Ezza North Local Government Area (LGA) of Ebonyi State, Hon. Mrs. Ngozika Onele, have allegedly attacked a Catholic priest in charge of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Nkomoro, Rev. Fr. Ejike.

Father Ejike was attacked for allegedly refusing to free the son of the councillor who was accused of destroying the priest’s cassava farm.

A community source told AbeyaNews that Fr. Ejike had vowed not to release the child, saying he had warned him on several occasions against destroying his farm, to no avail.

But Fr. Ejike’s refusal to release the child angered his family members who went and reported the matter to the Chairman of the Parish Council.

“When the Chairman of the Parish Council arrived at Father’s house, alongside Kelechi Nwali and Chika Nwali, who are brothers to the Ward Councillor, he sought to know what happened, but Fr. Ejike asked him to ask the people who brought him into the matter. It was in the process that quarrel ensued.

“Then, Chika Nwali insisted Father must release the boy to them without further delay. His outburst angered Father who ordered that he should leave his compound, but he refused. Chika said he would not leave without Father releasing the boy. In anger, Father brought a cane and started flogging him to leave his compound.

“Immediately Father used the cane on him, he collected it and broke it, into pieces, before Chika and his other brothers who were around, started beating him (Father) mercilessly,” the source narrated.

The source further gathered that the Father who could not bear the assault, had left the community, and currently stays at the Bishop’s quarters in Abakaliki, where he is also receiving treatment.

The Bishop of Abakaliki Dioceses, Michael Nnachi Okoro and the entire Catholic Community are said to be very furious over the incident.

When contacted through his GSM line, Fr. Ejike said he was not stable to talk to our Reporter.

He said: “I’m not stable to talk to you now.”

Fr. Ejike rebuffed further inquiries to know whether it was as a result of the attack that he was not “stable.”

“Allow me for now, please,” he said and hung up the phone.

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