Following the increasing cases of kidnapping, especially the ones involving Catholic priests across the country, the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba, has directed all commissioners of police and Special Tactical Squad commanders to ensure adequate security at various worship centres nationwide.
This is just as the Catholic Secretariat of Nigerian described the attacks on its clerics as signs of a sick society.
The PUNCH had on Wednesday reported that no fewer than 18 Catholic priests were kidnapped and three killed in the country since the beginning of 2022.
In an interview with The PUNCH on Wednesday, however, the Force Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, said the situation was being addressed.
“Due to recent happenings, the IGP has given directives to all Commissioners of Police and Tactical Commanders to provide security for all worship centres, Muslim and Christians, and recreational centres and the likes and provide men for them,” Adejobi said.
He also said some changes were being carried out in some of the critical units of the force.
He added, “To address the issue of kidnappings, we are trying to step up our ICT-based approaches and step our tactical unit to review our strategies to see how we can go after these kidnappers.
“The IGP is working with STS, Intelligence Response Team and SWAT and there are readjustments that are going on in these squads to meet up with the present demands. We are not relenting in our efforts to make sure we improve on our service delivery.”
Meanwhile, the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria has described the attacks on its priests and places of worship as signs of a sick society.
The Director of Communications, CSN, Rev. Father Michael Umoh, said this in an interview with The PUNCH.
He said, “Our concerns are more for Nigeria as a nation because attack on priests and sacred places is a symptom of a sick society.
“Thus, while facing the killing and attack of priests, highly condemnable as they are, we should mourn more for the nation that has been captured by people who do not mean well for her. That should call every good person to rise and fight against the evil that has befallen humanity in our nation, Nigeria.”
He regretted that life is no longer respected in the country, describing the situation as unfortunate.
While decrying government officials for not paying attention to the pains the people are going through, Umoh noted that people are still busy jostling for power in the midst of the terrible situation the country is.
When asked if he believes that the Catholic Church has been a target of attack, the cleric said, “It is obvious that many Catholic priests have been recently abducted and killed. It is also true that Nigerians in general are killed senselessly every day.”