…Bishop Ekpeye describes the abduction of Canon Hanson as a sign Of end
time…Calls For His Unconditional Release
Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Reverend Canon Bernard Hanson, the Vicar of St Jude’s Anglican Church, Odiemerenyi in Ahoada Diocese of the Anglican Communion and also the Clerical Synod Secretary of the diocese has been kidnapped.
He was traveling in the company Rev. Canon Umegbewe Jerome who managed to escape in the melee that ensured at the scene of the abduction.
The senior Anglican priest was abducted along Umuapu-Elele-Owerri-Port Harcourt road axis on Wednesday June 26, 2019 at about 8pm.
The Bishop of Ahoada Diocese, Rt. Rev. Clement Nathan Ekpeye described the abduction of Rev Bernard as a sign of end time while reacting to the incident in a press statement issued on his behalf in Port Harcourt by Comrade Ogboka Chris Umeda, the Diocesan Communicator.
He said: “the incident happened in the evening when Canon Hanson Bernard and Canon Umegbewe Jerome were journeying back to Port Harcourt after a clerical travel outside Rivers State”.
Bishop Ekpeye who was also similarly abducted in December last year said the abduction of the two priests are one too many and will have grave and spiritual consequences.
He said while efforts are being made to ensure his quick and unconditional release of the Priest, the prayer and spirituality department of the diocese has been commissioned to begin a prayer session against the ugly trend.
The bishop also admonished members of the diocese to join hands in prayers from where ever they are as the church has been challenged.
Rt. Rev Clement Ekpeye also commended the Vicar of Ihuaba parish, Rev Canon Umegbewe Jerome, who was in company of the Synod Secretary, for managing to escape in the midst of the confusion that ensued at the scene and called on the Federal Government to as a matter of urgency tackle insecurity as there is palpable fear in the air
He however, assured that nothing will happen to Canon Hanson as the Lord shall protect him even as communication has been established with the abductors.
Our correspondent was not privileged to know the mode of communications established and the mood of negotiations going on between the Diocese of Ahoada and the abductors.
What is however clear is that kidnapping in Nigeria an illicit business carried out by the abductors for purely pecuniary reasons.