A priest in the Catholic Diocese of Enugu, Rev. Fr. Ikechukwu Ilo, has been attacked by suspected Fulani herdsmen along Numeh- Nenwe road in the Nkanu East Local Government Area of the state.
A statement released by the Director of Communication, Catholic Diocese of Enugu, Rev. Fr. Benjamin Achi, says Father Ilo was riding in his car to his parish with one Mrs Chike Egbo when they were attacked by AK47 wielding herdsmen on Wednesday evening July 17th. According to Achi, two herdsmen came out from the bush and ordered the clergyman to stop his car. For refusing to obey their order, the herdsmen allegedly opened fire on the clergyman, causing him and the other occupant to sustain gunshot injuries.
Achi quoted Father Ilo as saying
“As we drove towards the village, the Fulani killer herdsmen, who spoke both in English and Fulani languages, opened fire, trying to force us to stop. Seeing that we were not ready to cave in to their intimidation, they started raining bullets on our vehicle at close range and in the process, shot me at my ankle and shoulder while the other victim was shot in her leg and waist.”
Achi said Father Ilo was immediately rushed o to the Annunciation Specialist Hospital, Emene where he is receiving treatment.
Confirming the incident, the spokesperson of the state police command, Ebere Amaraizu, said investigations into the matter has commenced. She however denied allegations that the attack was by Fulani herdsmen.
“The Enugu State command of the Nigeria Police Force through its operatives are investigating the attack by robbers on a priest identified as Rev. Fr. Ikechukwu Ilo of St. Patrick Parish, Numeh on Wednesday July 18, 2019, along Numeh axis of Nkanu East Local Government Area of Enugu State by unidentified persons, contrary to speculations of attack by a terrorist group.” Amaraizu said