Unrest has been reported in Anambra after a group of youths suspected to be members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, (IPOB), attacked a Catholic church in Onitsha.
Reports obtained by Naija News claimed that the hoodlums stormed the church during morning mass today with deadly weapons, including petrol, causing worshippers to flee the location.
A worshipper was quoted by Daily Post to have said that the assailants were demanding an explanation from the presiding priest why he was conducting mass on the day Nnamdi Kanu was slated to appear before the Federal High Court, in Abuja.
The source alleged further that the suspected IPOB members also burnt a tricycle found on the road, while they beat its driver to a pulp.
“This morning I went for the 5:30 am morning mass in my church, St Theresa of Kalkuta Parish in Awada, it is close to the Ukaegbu junction,” the source reportedly said.
The report added: “We were halfway into the mass when some group of boys suspected to me member of IPOB entered the church. They were carrying sticks and even fuel. They went straight to the altar and were almost halfway there.
“They approached our parish priest, Rev Fr Joseph and asked him why he was celebrating Mass on a day when their master was going to court. They were quite a number of them and were visibly angry.
“Everybody in the church took to their heels. There would have been a stampede because there were a lot of people in the mass today. I ran to a building close to the church.”
The Church Priest, Father Joseph is said to have told the hoodlums that the Church was holding mass today to pray for the release of IPOB embattled leader, Nnamdi Kanu.
“He used diplomacy to talk to them, and even asked them if they were really for Ndi Igbo or against Ndi Igbo? They now said okay, that if so, the people in the church were for them,” the source said.
Naija News learnt that the youths after hearing from Father Joseph, called back all worshippers that fled to return to the church and continue the mass, saying that they were now convinced that the church people were Biafrans.
“Some of us were so afraid that we could not return, so we went home from there. They apologized to the priest and left,” the source said.
“The same group went out and saw a tricycle rider. No one knows why the man was outside because, on sit at home days, you hardly find a tricycle outside. They beat up the man and burnt his tricycle, and the tricycle is still there now smoking,” the source recounted.