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News - South East - Anambra Updated: May 24, 2024

Kidnapped Anambra Catholic priest regains freedom

By Rasheed Olajide Awoniyi
May 24, 2024
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The Anambra State Government has confirmed the release of Reverend Father Basil Gbuzuo, an abducted Catholic priest from the state.

Unknown gunmen took the priest last week in Nkpor near Onitsha.

Christian Aburime, Anambra State Governor's Press Secretary, announced the priest's release in a statement on Friday. He did not elaborate on the issue but stated that the state government has begun work to eliminate all criminal elements in the state.

He said: “This is to inform the general public that Rev. Fr. Basil Gbuzuo, who was kidnapped on 15th May 2024 along the Nkpor-Obosi axis has regained freedom, through the onerous efforts of the joint security task team of Anambra State Government and well-meaning citizens.

“The State Government will not rest on its oars, as we work to ensure that any person held in captivity is released unconditionally and unhurt.

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“The Governor of Anambra State, Prof. Chukwuma Charles Soludo CFR, appreciates the contributions of all well-meaning people in the onerous effort to make Anambra a peaceful and liveable homeland.”

Aburime added: “We also seize this opportunity to send a strong warning to all criminals, their collaborators and sponsors. The full weight of the law will be brought on all such persons who engage directly or indirectly in orchestrating criminal activities.

“However, note that the olive branch offer extended to criminal elements who operate in the mould of agitators is still open.

“They should avail themselves of avenues provided by the State for them to be trained, rehabilitated and integrated back into the society.”

Meanwhile, Henry Okonkwo, a pupil at Landmark International School in Mgbakwu, Awka North Local Government Area, Anambra State, died after allegedly being beaten to a coma by a teacher.

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Allnews.ng gathered that the boy passed on early Wednesday morning.

Faith Nwonye, a 30-year-old teacher at the school, was detained on Monday for allegedly beating an eight-year-old student into a coma.

Prof. Ngozi Chuma-Udeh, the Commissioner for Education, had already invited Nwoye to explain the circumstances behind the child's brutalization on Monday, May 20, 2024.

Chuma-Udeh expressed concern at the development, stressing that the victim's odds of survival while under admission to a hospital are 20%.

She stated that the school was operating illegally, classifying the situation as a crime. The commissioner emphasised that perpetrators were acting at their own risk.

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The teacher was invited together with Promise Ilo, the school's proprietor at the time of the incident. The development resulted in the temporary closure of the school while an inquiry was stated to have begun.

The instructor who acknowledged beating the child, however, maintained that the flogging was not as harsh as the photo suggested.

The case was given over to the police for inquiry when the boy was in the intensive care unit of the hospital, from where he later gave up the ghost in the early hours of Wednesday.

On Thursday, the commissioner mourned the kid's death, stating that he was a boy like any other, with ambitions and aspirations.

She said, "He was a boy like any other, with hopes and dreams. He went to school for a brighter future but died a terrible death at the hands of those who were supposed to help him fulfil his life goals.

"A quack instructor from an unlicensed school bludgeoned him to death. We grieve a life that was cut short! We grieve Henry Chukwuemeka Okonkwo! We mourn and seek justice."

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Rasheed Olajide Awoniyi

Rasheed is a Prolific Content Writer who also has a niche in all Genres of Literature, Academic Pape...

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