Bandits Kill Kaduna Catholic Priest, John Mark Cheitnum
KanyiDaily had reported how Fr Cheitnum and Rev. Fr Donatus Cleopa were kidnapped at Christ the King’s Catholic Church, in Lere Local Government Area of Kaduna on Friday, July 15, 2022.
It was gathered that security operatives who were on a mission to rescue the priests found the remains of Father Cheitnum at a farm in a nearby village on Tuesday, July 19.
In a statement on Tuesday, the Chancellor of Kafanchan Catholic Diocese, Rev Father Emmanuel Okolo confirmed that Cleopas escaped from his abductors while Cheitnum was brutally murdered.
The statement reads, “Sequel to the announcement of the two kidnapped priests from our diocese, we wish to announce that Rev. Fr. Donatus Cleophas escaped from his abductors and has reunited with us.
“However, it is with a deep sense of sorrow and pains that the Bishop, Clergy, Religious and Laity of the Diocese of Kafanchan announce the gruesome murder of Very Rev. Fr. John Mark Cheitnum,”
“Fr. John Mark who was abducted from the rectory of Christ the King Parish Yadin Garu, Lere LGA of Kaduna State, was brutally killed by his abductors on the same day of his abduction, Friday 15th July, 2022. His corpse was later discovered already decomposing on Tuesday 19th July, 2022.
“Until his demise he was the CAN Chairman, Jama’a LGA, as well as the Coordinating Chairman of CAN, Southern Kaduna.
“Fr. was the Dean of Kwoi Deanery, Director of Communications in the Diocese of Kafanchan and the Pastor of St. Hames Parish Fori, Jama’a LGA, Kaduna State.
“Burial is slated for Thursday, 21st July 2022 at the Catheral of St. Peter Kafanchan, Kaduna State. Time:10am.
“As we solicit for prayers for the repose of our dear brother Priest and God’s consolation on his immediate family, we wish to humbly call on all and sundry to refarin from taking the laws into their hands.
“The Diocese has decelared a two day mourning for peaceful repose of his soul and may his soul and the souls of the faithful departed rest in peace. Amen.”
In a Facebook post dated May 25, 2022, Father Cheitnum wrote: “If Peter Obi joins lizard party, I go follow go vote am there”
This comes two week after another two Catholic priests, Rev. Father Peter Udo and Rev. Father Philemon Oboh were kidnapped by gunmen in Edo State.