The senseless massacre of innocent worshippers in a Catholic Church in Anambra State has once again shown our complete lack of respect for humanity.
On Sunday, August 6, 2017, Nigerians woke up to the shocking news that gunmen invaded the St. Philip Catholic Church in Ozubulu, Anambra State, opening fire on innocent worshippers, leaving over 11 of them dead with scores seriously injured.
The desecration of God's house by the mindless attackers have left Nigerians with so much anger with many wondering what they had in mind and the audacity and temerity they had in carrying out such a senseless massacre.
The massacre has shown that we have completely thrown away respect or lives and the sanctity of humanity. It is quite unbelievable that gunmen can go into a church and kill people who were praying to their God.
According to information making the rounds, the attack was a result of a war between rival drug barons over a business gone sour in South Africa. Though the story is far from being concerned, many things beg for answers.
In truth, there is no justification or rationale for taking a private war to God's house and killing innocent people who were just worshipping their God. No matter what the rivals had, they should have battled it out without involving innocent lives and throwing their families into mourning.
Another rumour that came after the attack was that the church was built and donated to the Nnewi Catholic Diocese by a suspected drug baron who had defrauded his business partners and fled South Africa with the loot back to Nigeria.
There have been so many stories surrounding the man in question identified as High Chief Aloy Ikegwuonu also known as Bishop, who is said to be a philanthropist and has been doling out money to the church.
The question that comes to mind is whether in collecting the monies and building donation from Bishop if the church had done a background check on him or bothered to find out the source of his money and wealth.
Also, did his community and the people of his domain care to find out how he made his money before he was chieftaincy titles? It also goes to show how we place too much emphasis on money and its acquisition without caring to find out how such money is made.
If the story about Bishop is true, it is a true reflection of who we really are, where money and wealth are celebrated and the youths would do anything to make money including drug trafficking, kidnapping, armed robbery and other vices.
It has also laid us bare in the eyes of the world especially South Africans who have continued to label Nigerians who are resident in their country as drug traffickers, armed robbers, and fraudsters.
The Xenophobic attacks on Nigerians stem from this mistrust where the average Nigerian is not trusted because they are all seen as criminals, a clear case of one finger with palm oil soiling the rest of the fingers.
The massacre is also a pointer to the failure of the government and the various security agencies in the country and calls for a revamping of the security system.
It is also a systemic failure beginning from the home, society and the religious organizations. Most parents place so much weight on their children and anyone who fails to meet up to his peers is seen as a failure. The pressure then makes them go all out to get money so that they will gain the respect of their family and society.
While we pray for the souls of the departed to find peace in God's bosom and wish the families fortitude at this time, it is also imperative to implore the police to be up and doing in making sure the perpetrators of that dastardly act are arrested and prosecuted.
It will not just be enough to give out statements that they have been arrested but painstaking investigations must be carried out and seen to be done.
The Anambra State Government should also make sure compensation are paid to the families of the victims as well as taking up the medical bills of those injured.
Then and only then, will the victims' families find a closure and know that their people did not die in vain.
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