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Saturday, 15 September 2018

Methodist priest arrested over murder of Enugu monarch.

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The crisis rocking Ogbozinne-Akpugo community in Nkanu West Council of Enugu State over the death of its traditional ruler, Igwe Stephen Nwatu, took another dimension yesterday with the arrest of the Parish Priest of Emmanuel Methodist Church, Ogbozinne, Rev. Kenneth Azikiwe Okafor.

Okafor, who was billed to appear before the judicial panel of inquiry set up by the state government over the crisis rocking the community on Monday, was allegedly picked at the church premises around 12.45 pm by three heavily armed security operatives and whisked to an unknown destination.

The unidentified operatives, who were said to be accompanied by one of the community leaders, had, on grabbing the priest, seized his mobile phone and dragged him into their waiting van, to the chagrin of few church members at the scene, who took to their heels.

Meanwhile, the Bishop of the Methodist Church, Agbani Diocese, Rt. Rev. Udo U. Mmeregini, who confirmed the incident, told reporters that the whereabouts of the priest remained unknown.

“I got a call from the Presbyter in charge of the Circuit this afternoon that Rev. Okafor had been arrested by some persons with Police inscription. The people that arrested him did not state the reason why they were arresting him.

They took him like a common criminal in the church premises and took off.

“We have called his phone severally and it has been off. We don’t know where they have taken him. But I have serious suspicion that it must have a link with the crisis in the community.

“I have sent my priests to the Divisional Police headquarters in Agbani; they came back and reported that the station said they knew nothing about the arrest.

I have sent them to the Area Command, but they are yet to come back (at the time of filing this report).

“The truth is that we are still searching for him and making inquiries at various Police stations to see if we can track him and also to know why they arrested him,” he said.
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