The Catholic Church in Akwa Ibom State in south-south Nigeria has urged members of the public to offer prayers for its priest who was recently abducted by gunmen.
The abducted priest, Alphonsus Uboh, was abducted around 7 p.m. on May 8 from his home inside the parish he served in Ikot Akpan Abasi, Mkpat Enin Local Government Area of State of Akwa Ibom.
His captors are demanding a ransom of 100 million naira before his release.
“We call on all men and women of good will to pray for his release from the hands of his captors,” Charles Ekeng, Reverend Father and Diocesan Chancellor, said in a May 9 statement on behalf of the Catholic Diocese of Uyo.
“As we seek intense prayer for his speedy and safe release, we also wish to appeal to all not to take the laws into their own hands.
“We are using all lawful means to ensure his safe release,” the statement said.
The Catholic Church said Mr Uboh was abducted shortly after he returned to his residence after visiting an ailing parishioner.
The priest has spent three nights in captivity so far.
His abduction came days after a popular Pentecostal preacher was abducted and later released, reportedly after a ransom was paid.
Meanwhile, a Catholic priest kidnapped eight weeks ago in Kaduna, northwestern Nigeria, has would be dead in captivity.
The priest, Joseph Bako, died between April 18 and 20, according to Catholic authorities in Kaduna.
He was 48 years old.
Kidnapping for ransom is now one of the dominant crimes in various Nigerian cities.
Politicians, entrepreneurs, and anyone with good financial worth, including schoolchildren, are easy targets.
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