Feb 6, 2016 – Nte Ofina Echara Shrine Chief Priest Arrested For Attacking Catholic Rev Father Cornelius Ovuta Of Assumption Parish In Abina Ikwo Ebonyi State
The Chief priest of the popular Nte-ofina Echara shrine in Echara Community, Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, Nteh James Onele, has been remanded in Abakaliki Federal Prisons for attacking a Catholic priest.
The catholic priest, Reverend Father Cornelius Ovuta, is in charge of Assumption Parish, Abina Ikwo. He was attacked by the goddess worshippers on his way to visit a sick member of his parish.
His catechist, who accompanied him on the visit, however escaped and alerted the villagers. The villagers later rescued Ovuta. The attack on Ovuta led to his being hospitalized for weeks at the Federal Teaching Hospital Abakaliki (FETHA).
The priest allegedly lost valuables items during the attack. The chief priest of the shrine and perpetrators of the attack was said to have gone into hiding after the accident. The police trailed and arrested John. He was arraigned.
John, a septuagenarian, on October, 20, 2015, with those standing trial in suit No. MAB 458C/2015 and others now at large, attempted to murder Ovuta on his way to visit a sick person.
The accused purportedly damaged property of Ovuta worth N1, 546,000.00 during the attack. John was accused of damaging one white soutane valued at N20,000, mass box valued at N120,000, communion cup N30,000, packets of communion N10,000 and Cauli N18,000.
Others are, one Alb N18, 000, one Skygo motorcycle N130, 000 driven by his catechist, Ezeaka Kenneth and one Nissan Sunny car with registration number AT 394GWA valued at N1.2 million.
John was said to have committed offences punishable under sections 324, 320(a), 451 and 355 all of the Criminal Code cap 33 volume 1 laws of Ebonyi State of Nigeria 2009.