Taraba Catholic seminary herdsmen attack, priest shot

Taraba Catholic seminary herdsmen attack, priest shot

A catholic priest Cornelius Pobah has been shot in the latest Taraba Catholic Seminary Herdsmen Attack in Jalingo on Monday, May 28, 2018.

The attack was said to have been perpetrated early hours of today Monday, May 28, where some students were also injured with several cars damaged.

The injured people have been taken to Federal Medical Centre for treatment, report says.

It’s unclear if lives were lost at the time of filing this report.

With permission from my Bishop, Most Rev. Charles Hammawa of Jalingo Diocese, I Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Atsue (the Rector) want to announce and inform Nigerians and the international community that our diocesan Sacred Heart Minor Seminary was attacked in the early hours of this morning 28/05/2018 at about 12:30am by sophisticated armed Fulani Herdsmen (at least we heard their conversation).

They shot sporadically at the Rector’s residence, broke window glasses in the process, (litered live bullets were collected by police) windscreen of one of the vehicles belonging to one of the priests, they shot and injured one of the priests Rev. Fr. Cornelius Kobah on the leg, beat up Fr. Stephen Bakari.

From their conversation we were able to understand that their grievances against us is that the security men in the Seminary have been challenging their decision to graze right inside the Seminary: around the classes, football field, laundry etc.

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They said even inside the church if they see grass their cows will graze. Normalcy has temporarily been restored thanks to the prompt response from the Nigerian Police, Army, Civil Defense and local vigilantee.

All our students are complete, none is missing. Two of them who were showing them the way to the Father’s house suffered injuries from the sticks of the herdsmen.

I had a meeting with the officials of the Parents Teachers Association PTA and the bishop has equally approved one week break for the seminarians to enable them manage trauma for a while and to show themselves to their parents that they were safe.

For now this is the situation. Let us continue to pray for and work for peace in Nigeria.

Meanwhile, the police have evacuated the students at the Catholic seminary in the state capital following the invasion.

Taraba police commissioner, David Akinremi, confirmed that the attack occurred at about 12:30 a.m. Monday.

Likely Cause of Taraba Catholic Seminary Herdsmen Attack

No one can specifically say what caused the attack, but there had been herdsmen attacks on people in the state in the past.

However, the police commissioner said the cause of the attack could be attributed to previous dispute herdsmen had with the management of the seminary over their grazing activities in and around the premises.

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Casualties of Taraba Catholic Seminary Herdsmen Attack

Priests were attacked while students sustained injuries after the invasion.

One of the priest, Cornelius Pobah, who was hit by bullet in the leg, was taken to the Federal Medical Centre in the state.

Report say the gunmen were specifically requested to see the priest when they invaded the seminary at midnight.

The police commissioner confirmed that all students have been evacuated from the school and all threats neutralised.

He said no life was lost.

Security operatives comprising the police and soldiers have been drafted to the area.

At the time of filing this report, no suspect has been arrested, but Mr. Akinremi promised that thorough investigation would be conducted and culprits would be arrested.

“Some shepherds had been coming to the premises to graze their cattle and the priest had challenged them about that in the past,” Mr Akinremi said. “We confirmed that the attackers were speaking Fulani and a little bit of pidgin English.”

“Our men had evacuated the students from the school and fortified the area to ensure that no remnants of the gunmen remained,” the police chief said. “After which we will return the students back to the school.”

Several lives have been lost since attack by suspected herdsmen on Taraba, Benue and other surrounding states began late last year December 2017.

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President Muhammadu Buhari’s government says it’s doing all it could to bring the killings to an end.

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