Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu has explained his emotions when he visited St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo following the devastating terrorist attack on Sunday, June 5.
On what has come to be known as Black Sunday, armed gunmen attacked the church, killing a total of 40 worshippers with another 80 people injured. The Governor described the things he saw and the stories he heard during his visits to the scene as well as speaking to victims and survivors of the terror attack. He added that the entire experience brought tears to his eyes.
Speaking to a delegation of Ondo Province, Anglican Communion, led by the Archbishop of Ondo Province and Bishop of Akure Diocese, His Grace, Simeon Borokini on Wednesday, the Governor described the attack as indescribable carnage.
On his visit to the church and speaking to the victims and survivors, the Governor said,
“I was in Abuja and I got several calls and in less than three hours I was already back in Owo. I visited the scene of the crime. When I got there it was still a bit fresh; I saw pool of blood inside the church here and there. It was very clear to us that the people that came, came to maim and kill and no other thing.
“They did not kidnap anybody, they did not take a penny, neither did they ask the people for their phones. After blasting the altar, they still went to the Sacristy and killed those hiding there. They started shooting from the gate of the church, according to the account of those who were there.
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“I have been to the hospitals severally. When you get to the hospital and see people who suffered from gunshots and those who can tell the story of their relatives like the woman whose daughter also suffered gunshots, who said she lost her only son who is studying Pharmacy in the university. That child would probably still be in the university if not for ASUU strike.
“If you get to the hospital and see a nurse who walked into the St Francis to pray and today she has no leg again. Her two legs have been amputated.
“When I got to the children ward, that was where I wept because I was convinced and said, what can you call the sins of these children ? It did not make sense. You killed many children. Who will not weep? Is that a scene to be happy about? What have these children done? Do they deserve this?
“What happened is indescribable. I keep repeating it, these are animals. You must have lost your sense of humanity to carry out such a dastardly act against the defenseless people. But as Christians we will keep thanking God because in all things we must give thanks.
“It has happened and there is nothing we can do, but we will work to prevent this sort of calamity from happening again. Like I have been saying, we have come to this country in peace. We have never gone out of our place to go and cause havoc in any place. It has never happened. We have come to this country in peace and let them leave us in peace”