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Enough is enough: Catholics across Nigeria protest incessant herdsmen killings
CATHOLIC faithful took to the streets on Tuesday across several states of the federation in protest of the incessant violent killings by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
The protests coincided with the burial of Joseph Gor and Felix Tyolaha, two Catholic Priests that were killed alongside 17 others in an attack by herdsmen on April 24.
In the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the peaceful demonstration was led by Bishop Anselm Umoren, Auxiliary Bishop of Abuja Archdiocese.
A mass was held at the National Ecumenical Centre, after which the protesters marched to Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Pro-Cathedral, Area 3, Garki, Abuja, praying the rosary and breaking into songs at intervals.
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They wielded placards with such inscriptions as ‘enough is enough’, ‘life is sacred’, ‘herdsmen killings must stop’, etc.
Channels Television reports that the protest was also held in Edo, Oyo, Benue, Lagos, Kaduna, Adamawa and Kwara States. In Dioceses where a protest could not be held due to security reasons, requiem masses were held in honour of the victims of herdsmen attacks.
John Cardinal Onaiyekan, the Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, was in Benue State, where he presided over the burial mass for the two priests as well as the 17 other deceased persons.
In his sermon, he said Nigeria is in a state of Emergency and as such, government must stop paying lip service to the issue of security.
“The nation is in a state of emergency. We demand for synergy. Division, especially on tribal lines, will only throw our nation to anarchy,” Onaiyekan said.
He called on citizens to be vigilant and to be their brothers’ keepers, but he also warned that if the killings were allowed to continue, the time will come when people will be left with no choice than to seek other means of self defense.
Below are some of the pictures of the protesters in different States of the federation: