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Irate Youths Attack Catholic Church Members

 

A group of Catho­lic members were yesterday attacked in their parish by some suspected Muslim youths who accused them of wor­shipping on Friday, saying it was a day set aside for Muslim worship.

The incident was said to have occurred around 2pm in St Philip’s Catho­lic Parish Baki Iku, close to Zuma Rock, bordering the FCT and Niger State, shortly after the Muslim youths had closed from their Jumat service.

According to eyewit­nesses, the suspected Muslim youths stormed the parish while the members were praying and attacked the Catho­lic members claiming that Friday is their day of prayer and that the Church only has right to worship on Sundays.

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The Muslim youths in a fit of rage destroyed the Church properties in­cluding the doors, win­dows, musical instru­ments and altar.

The Catholic members managed to escape being lynched by the suspect­ed irate Muslim youths while some soldiers who later arrived at the church premises managed to pre­vent more damage car­ried out on the church property

The Vicar General of the diocese, Rev Fr. Luka Sylvester Gopep, con

firmed the incident. He said the security man on the premises was beaten to pulp while the seminarian resident in the parish was also beaten.

In his words, “sometime around 2pm, some Muslim youths in their hundreds left their Mosque after their Friday Jumat prayer and rushed to the Church premises, climbed the wall and destroyed everything in the Church: the win­dows, the altar, musical instruments, the chapel. The security man in the church premises was beat­en to pulp. Some women who were holding a prayer meeting were chased away. The seminarian who is resi­dent in the premises was also beaten up and chased away,” he stated.

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Every attempt to get the Police spokesman, DCP Don Awunah, through his cellphone, to react to the incident, including a text message, proved abortive.

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