January 27, 2023

The operatives of the Amotekun Corps have confirmed the arrest of some suspects connected to the terrorist attack on St. Francis Catholic Church, Owo, Ondo State, that left scores of people dead with many others seriously injured.

This announcement is coming barely 24 hours after President Muhammadu Buhari assured Nigerians that the attackers who he described as “cowards” behind recent assaults on churches in the country will be punished.

This disclosure was made by the state commander of Amotekun Corps, Adetunji Adeleye, while addressing journalists on Thursday in Akure, the state capital.

Adeleye, who stated this while parading 71 suspects who were paraded for various criminal activities across the state, did not give the actual figure of the suspects arrested.

However, the corps leader was optimistic that everyone who was involved in the Owo Attack would be brought to book.

What the Amotekun Commander is saying

Adeleye said, “As regards the Owo incident, we have recovered the last vehicle they used for that operation and we made some arrests and we have also recovered some vital things which we are working on.

“A number of people have been arrested concerning the Owo issue as well as a number of equipment. On that day, we pursued them to the point that we recovered the vehicle and we are still pursuing them. We have told you that until we get to the root, I can assure you that the perpetrators and their sponsors will be brought to book.”

The police not aware of such arrest

When contacted for confirmation, the Ondo State Police Command through its spokesperson, SP Funmilayo Odunlami, said the force is not aware of such an arrest.

Nevertheless, it is expected that the Amotekun Corps would hand the suspects over to the police for further investigations and onward prosecution.

What you should know

  • Recall that on Sunday, June 5, some unidentified gunmen launched an attack on a Catholic church in Ondo state in Nigeria during mass on Sunday, killing scores of people with many people sustaining serious injuries.
  • The attackers targeted the St Francis Xavier Catholic Church in the town of Owo as the worshippers gathered on Pentecost Sunday, gunning down parishioners and detonating an explosive device.
  • On June 9, the Federal Government through the National Security Council blamed ISWAP as being responsible for the attack on St. Francis Catholic Church, Owo, Ondo State, on Sunday, June 5.
  • However, the Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, disagreed with the declaration of Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP) as being responsible for the terrorist attack at a Catholic Church in Owo, Ondo State, by the Federal Government, describing their conclusion as being too hasty.

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