Kukah suspends Catholic Masses in Sokoto over Deborah Samuel’s killing

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THE Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, Matthew Hassan-Kukah, has suspended all Masses in the state.

In a statement issued on Saturday by the Director of Social Communications in the Diocese, Rev. Fr Christopher Omotosho, the cleric also dismissed reports on the attack on his residence by hoodlums protesting the arrest of two suspected killers of the student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Deborah Samuel.

He commended the state Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, for imposing a 24-hour curfew on the Sokoto metropolis in a bid to prevent a total breakdown of law and order in the state.

Samuel, a 200-level student of the college, was killed by an angry mob on Thursday for allegedly insulting Prophet Muhammed.

The police later arrested two people in connection with the incident.

A group of Muslim youths on Saturday protested in the state capital and demanded the release of the suspects.

The statement read: “The Sokoto State Government has declared a 24-hour curfew to help stem the ongoing protests embarked upon by Muslim youth in the state capital today.

“During the protest, groups of youths led by some adults in the background attacked the Holy Family Catholic Cathedral at Bello Way, destroying church glass windows, those of the Bishop Lawton Secretariat were also attacked and a community bus parked within the premises vandalised.

“St. Kevin’s Catholic Church Gidan Dere, Eastern By-pass, was also attacked and partly burnt; windows of the new hospital complex under construction, in the same premises were shattered.”

“They were promptly dispersed by a team of Mobile Policemen before they could do further damage.

“Contrary to information in circulation, we wish to disclaim that there was an attack of any sort on the residence of Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah.

“The Bishop appeals to Christians to remain law abiding and pray for the return of normalcy.

“All Masses in the Sokoto metropolis have been suspended until the curfew is lifted.”

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