Unlike before when worship centres were sacred to everybody - even to evil doers, things have drastically change. Worship centres are no longer sacred. And clerics are no longer special. They are now subjects to be kidnapped or murdered indiscriminately.
Report by Punch Newspaper indicated that at least 139 clerics and worshipers have been killed in various attacks across the country between January 1, 2021, and July 4, 2022.
Also, no fewer than 394 religious faithful were kidnapped during the period under review.
Here is a breakdown of those attacked within this period.
- 53 Islamic clerics and worshipers were killed and 165 abducted
- 229 Christians were kidnapped and 86 were murdered.
- Bandits kidnapped 50 Muslims on a Maulud procession in Katsina on March 11.
- On May 10, gunmen stormed a Katsina Mosque and reportedly abducted 40 worshipers.
- In September, one person was killed and three parishioners were abducted from a Church in Kogi.
- Armed hoodlums also reportedly shot 17 people dead and abducted 18 others from a Mosque in Niger state on October 25.
- Bandits attacked a mosque in Kaduna where they abducted 24 persons on March 10, 2022.
- A police inspector and two others were kidnapped from an Ogun mosque on April 3.
- On June 4, armed herdsmen abducted a pastor and his wife and also stabbed another person in Abia.
- 40 persons were killed during the attack on St Xavier Francis Catholic Church Owo, Ondo state, on June 6.
- On June 19, gunmen were said to have attacked Catholic and Baptist churches, killed four and abducted 44
- 21 Muslim pilgrims were abducted in Sokoto on June 22.
- Gunmen abducted two Catholic priests in Edo on July 3
- On July 4, suspected bandits kidnapped another Catholic priest in Kaduna.
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Drama as permanent secretary turns to a cleaner in Abuja
Meanwhile, a permanent secretary in the ministry of Defence, Dr Ibrahim Kana is reported to have extended his schedule to include supervising the day to day cleaning of the toilets in the ministry. Feelers have it that the man resumes work daily as early as 7 am to supervise the workers saddled with the task of keeping the conveniences clean- a development though considered bizarre but now yielding result as the office complex now emits pleasant smells that make the environment conducive.
In a similar vein, the man caused a stir when he climbed atop a giant 33, 000 litres tank that harbours the diesel used in powering the ministry's generator plant.
Miffed by the incommensurable volume of diesel consumed daily to power the Ship House complex, he went out on cause finding mission and to get the answer, he climbed the tank. His finding became a working template that has brought about reduction in cost and eliminated wastage thus ensuring steady power supply at a minimal cost that has led to improved efficiency in the ministry.