Death of IPOB Members: No Loss of Life, worth any Agitation - Bishop Okoye

Dec 14, 2018

Bishop Jonas Benson Okoye (standing), bares his mind on right to agitation at Ekwulobia, November 25, 2018.

….Says No to Social Injustice

By Ifeoma Ezenyilimba

The auxiliary bishop of Awka Catholic Diocese, Most Rev. Jonas Benson Okoye, has condemned the killing of a member of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and a police officer in the heat of the agitation by IPOB members in Nnewi recently, saying that no loss of life is worth the agitation.

Bishop Okoye, who spoke at the 2018 Solemnity of Christ the King Celebration for Ekwulobia Catholic Community, at St Joseph's Pro-Cathedral, Parish, Ekwulobia, Aguata L.G.A., November 25, noted that individuals had a right to demonstration and agitation, but insisted that no life was worth losing in the process.

The bishop, who cited the Fundamental Human Rights, observed that IPOB members, like other citizens, and even civil servants, who felt they were poorly remunerated, had the right to demonstration. He however said it must be through the proper process so as to avoid loss of human lives, noting that any life lost was sacred to God.

Bishop Okoye condemned the alleged attempt by the IPOB members to take their demonstration to the Church, saying such was unacceptable, because according to him, the Church was also against the injustice being meted out to the Igbos.

The Catholic bishop, who flayed the Nigerian Government, its agencies and service providers, against social injustice done to the people, said that the Catholic Church had been insistent in her great voice that every Nigerian had equal right to Fundamental Human Rights. This was even as he added that the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), had remained steadfast in its insistence for restructuring for a better Nigeria for all.

Pointing out that the Church would encounter difficulties so that her children would live, Bishop Okoye noted that the Church had been with the people in the struggle against social injustice. He described as unacceptable, the inability of the Enugu Electricity Development Company (EEDC) to provide every home with prepaid meter as stipulated in the current provision, but instead still gave out estimated bills to many homes, and still threatened people with what he termed unhealthy power disconnections.

Ahead of the 2019 electioneering campaigns, the bishop equally advised youths against giving in to rascality, but urged them to listen to the voice of reason and put their youthful age into very good use.

A section of the Igbo Catholic faithful at the 2018 Solemnity of Christ the King Celebration: They, like other Nigerians, have equal right to Fundamental Human Right.

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