Suspected Islamic terrorists burn down Catholic vicarage in Nigeria while priest slept raising fears of the ruling party APC’s Muslim presidential ticket
Suspected Islamic terrorists affiliated to the Islamic State of West Africa (ISWAP) launched an attack on the residence of the Catholic Bishop of Paikoro, Rev. Father Isaac Achi of St. Peters and Paul Catholic Church, in Paikoro Local Government Area of Niger State, north central Nigeria early Sunday.
Niger State Police Command confirmed the attack in a statement. “Armed bandits invaded the Parish residence of the Rev. Father and set the house ablaze which consumed the Rev Father.” DSP Wasiu Abiodun, the spokesperson of the Police Command said.
The police spokesman gave details of the gruesome attack which took place about 3.00AM. A colleague of the Rev. Father, Father Collins was shot on the shoulder while trying to escape from the scene.
He said the lifeless body of Father Isaac was recovered while Father Collins was rushed to the hospital for treatment when Police tactical teams attached to Kaffin-Koro Division blitzed the scene. By then the hoodlums had vanished.
Police Commissioner Ogundele Ayodeji has dispatched police reinforcements to the affected area with a forensics team. Detectives with assistance from the Department of State Services (DSS) field office are currently carrying out an intense investigation to bring the killers to book
“This is a sad moment. For a priest to be killed in such a manner means that we are not all safe. These terrorists have lost it, and drastic action is needed to end this ongoing carnage,” said Niger state governor Sani Bello.
This latest violence raising concerns about security ahead of an election next month further heightening fears of a Muslim take over of the country. The ruling party has presented two Muslims as their presidential and vice presidential candidate.
Nigerians will vote for a new president on Feb. 25 but kidnappings for ransom and killings by armed gangs in the north have lead to fears that polls may not be held in some areas.
The motive for the latest attack was not immediately clear but gunmen have previously targeted priests in the largely Muslim north.
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