A worship service was in progress when several numbers of masquerade trooped into the church
It was a shocking and bloody scene as masquerade invade church service in Anambra state leaving many injured in a pool of blood.The masquerades, who were said to be celebrating a festival known as Uzo Iyi, invaded the worship ground, Holy Ghost Adoration Ministry, Uke, Idemili North Local Government Area of Anambra State. 22 people sustained various degrees injury while one died.
A worship service was in progress when several numbers of masquerade trooped into the church, beating up members and attempted to throw away the special director of the ministry, Fr Obimma. Three of the masquerade members were arrested by operatives of SARS after a complaint from the church that they were extorting worshippers coming to the church. The leadership of the church reached out to SARS to help their security and protect their members. Upon the arrival of SARS, they were able to arrest 3 of the members. The masquerade’s colleagues tried to stopped the security agents which led to sporadic shooting into the air before taking the masquerade away.
The personal Assistant to Fr, Obimma, Francis Okoye told the journalist that Rev Father Henry Nnajiofor, a seminarian and 28 others were injured during the attack on the worshippers while witnesses said one of the victims is feared dead as a result of the attack. Okoye said,“As at 8:30 pm, we started receiving information that group of masquerades were attacking our members, inflicting bodily injuries on them as a result of severe flogging. They flogged some of them, stabbed some with their weapons including machete, while others were robbed of their mobile phones and other valuables. “We quickly contacted the SARS office to assist our Adoration security that could not handle the situation at that point in time. When SARS arrived in an hour later, they arrested two masquerades but on their way back, the youths blocked the road and insisted that the masquerades must be released. That was when SARS officials fired shots on the air to disperse them. “When SARS left, they regrouped again and this time came in their numbers to the Adoration premises, beating everybody including the elderly, the sick and pregnant women. Our Adoration youths, in defence, pursued them and arrested one other masquerade who stayed in the Adoration ground with us until this morning when we handed him over the official of the Nigerian Army that came for our rescue.”
The Office of the Public Relations of Anambra state Police Command, ASP Nkiru Nwode confirmed that the incident occured and also debunked the rumor that the Police officers from SARS were attacked. She also added that three of the masquerades were arrested and are being investigated currently.Photo Credit: Getty