Authorities of Catholic Church in Cameroon said on Monday gunmen have kidnapped a Catholic priest in Mamfe in the troubled Anglophone region of Southwest.
Julius Agbortoko, Vicar General of the diocese, was abducted Sunday evening on the church premises, a few minutes after he returned from pastoral visitation, according to the Chancellor of the Diocese of Mamfe Sebastine Sinju.
He said, the gunmen who identified themselves as separatist fighters were asking for a ransom of 20 million xaf (approximately 35,969 U.S. dollars) for his release.
“I use this opportunity to decry the seemingly incessant attacks on the church in general and that of Mamfe in particular. Could the stakeholders of the ongoing armed conflict kindly hands off the church, for God’s sake,” Sinju said in a statement.
Operatives were already combing the locality with the view to rescue the priest and arrest the abductors, according to local authorities.
The Catholic Church has witnessed a series of attacks by gunmen since separatist fighters who want to create an independent nation in Cameroon’s two Anglophone regions started clashing with government forces in 2017.
In 2018, Rev. Father Cosmas Omboto Ondari, a 33-year-old Kenya priest was shot dead in front of the church in the Southwest region. Enditem