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Terrorists kill Catholic priest, another still missing

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A Catholic priest in Sokoto State Alphonsus Yashim Bello was killed by terrorists on Friday in Malunfashi, close to Kankara in Katsina State. 

Communications Director for the Diocese of Sokoto Chris Omotosho disclosed the death of the 33-year-old priest in a memo to the national leadership of the Catholic Church.

The St. Vincent Ferrer Catholic Church Malunfashi, Katsina State, was attacked by terrorists at about 11:30 pm on Thursday and Bello was abducted alongside the former parish priest Joe Keke, a 75-year-old man.

READ ALSOBoko Haram planning attacks on major cities in Nigeria -IGP

On Friday morning, the lifeless body of Bello was found in the farmland behind the Catechetical Traning School, Malubishnfashi, Katsina State.

Bello was a member of the Kaduna Archdiocese, but was on Secondment in Sokoto Diocese and deployed to the Malumfashi parish in Katsina where he was killed by the terrorists.

The leadership of the Sokoto Diocese said the whereabouts of Keke was still unknown as there had been no contact from the terrorists.

Terrorists abduct former priest, Joe Keke

Sokoto Diocese ChancellorCornelius Tagwai, who announced Bello’s death, noted that he was abducted alongside the most senior priest of the Sokoto Diocese Keke who was still missing.

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“This sad event took place at the early hours of today, Friday, May 21, 2021. The late Fr  Bello was kidnapped along with Very Rev Fr. Joseph Keke, the most Senior Priest of Sokoto Diocese, but his lifeless body was later found abandoned behind the CTC, Malumfashi. The whereabouts of Fr Keke is not yet known,” Tagwai said.

The killing of the bishop is part of the state of insecurity that has escalated across Nigeria, most especially in the Northern region of Nigeria.

Lukman Abolade is an Investigative reporter with The ICIR. Reach out to him via [email protected], on twitter @AboladeLAA and FB @Correction94

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