Four clerics killed, 18 others kidnapped in Kaduna in five years, says CAN

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THE state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) says four clerics have been killed with 18 others kidnapped since the commencement of banditry in the state five years ago.

Speaking at the Peace and Security summit organised by the ECWA Goodnews Church in Kaduna, today, chairman, Rev Joseph Hayab, noted that in 2019, CAN published records of kidnappings where it recorded a total of over five hundred (500) Christians who had been kidnapped.

According to him, “on record, CAN have about 18 clerics kidnapped with four of them killed.’

He said the following; Jeremiah Omolara – Living Faith Church, Romi New Extension, Rev Iliya Anto – Former Vice President of HEKAN Church, Rev Fr. John Bako Shekwolo – St. Theresa Catholic Church, Ankwa, Kachia Local Government Area and Rev Hosea Akuchi – Nasara Baptist Church, Guru were killed.

According to the Christian leader, “CAN gather these records through a questionnaire developed and shared in one of her meetings with hundreds of clerics and relations of kidnapped victims in over 20 communities that were sacked from their communities as a result of their abductions”.

He noted that data gathered also reveals an approximated amount of money paid as ransom to have people freed within the period, on a survey, to be over three hundred million naira (N 300,000 000) as of 2019.

“Today, the amount has risen to over a billion naira with many victims dead and even more still in the hands of kidnappers as we speak.

“When CAN present the statistics above, CAN was misinterpreted, but a Kaduna State 2020 annual Security report released by the government and published by Guardian Newspaper on March 10, 2021, vindicated CAN and further showed that our record did not capture the colossal damage that the spade of kidnapping has brought to bear on the population.

“The government’s report as published stated that 937 people were killed by bandits and 1972 kidnapped within the period. Another first quarter 2021 security report published by the government reported by premium times, on the 30th of April 2021 indicates that 323 people were killed, and 949 people have been kidnapped.”

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