• Monday, July 15, 2024
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Mbaka: Irate youths vandalise Enugu Catholic Bishop’s residence


Irate youths on Wednesday took the law into their hands, vandalising the official residence of the Catholic Bishop of Enugu Diocese, Bishop Callistus Onaga in protest against alleged arrest and of Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka, a fiery priest who recently asked President Muhammadu Buhari to resign over poor management of the nation’s economy.

The protesting youths suspected to be members of the Adoration Ministry and numbering over 1,000 stormed the residence of the Enugu bishop located at Igboeze Street, Independence Layout, demanding the release of Mbaka.

Mbaka is founder and director of the popular Adoration Ministries, Enugu, and Parish priest, St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Emene.

One of the protesters who spoke anonymously said they wanted the bishop to clarify the “rumoured arrest of Mbaka who had not been seen since Tuesday.”

The protesters, who were chanting anti-Bishop Onaga songs, asked him to resign. They alleged that Onaga invited him on Sunday for a meeting where he handed him over to the security officers.

Another protester, Stella Nduka alleged that the man of God was invited for a meeting three days ago by his bishop and since then no one had seen him.

“We are going to Bishop Court at Independence Layout to demand for his immediate release from his eminence. He will explain to us where he kept him since Sunday and he cannot betray our daddy (Mbaka); he cannot be used to arrest him,” she said.

Another member of the ministry, Kenneth Uzoma complained that the members waited for the priest to hold its service early hours of Wednesday but he did not show up.

“This raised questions and suspicions that his rumored missing was true. We waited and he did not show up, so we decided to protest at the bishop’s court to demand for his release.

“We were told that his phone numbers were ringing without answering. We are angry over everything and we will not go until they release him to us,” he said.

The Adoration members also protested at different parts of the state demanding for Mbaka’s release. There was, however, heavy presence of military men at the bishop’s court trying to curtail the mammoth crowd that besieged the court to ensure that lives and property are not lost.

Efforts to reach the director of communication, Catholic Diocese, Enugu, Fr Benjamin Achi and the police public relations officer, Daniel Ndukwe failed as they refused to pick their calls.

Meanwhile, Mbaka, on Wednesday, reappeared few hours after his supporters staged the protests.

He arrived at the Catholic Bishop’s residence in a motorcade amid jubilation from his Adoration faithful around 2.45pm.

The priest, however, stopped in front of the Bishop’s Court and addressed his supporters urging them to remain calm and return to the Adoration ground for further information.