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Akeredolu acknowledges arrest of suspects linked to Owo church killings  

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Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, on Tuesday, acknowledged that security operatives have arrested five persons linked to the killing of worshippers at the St Francis Catholic Church, Owaluwa, Owo, Ondo State.

The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Lucky Irabor, had earlier in Abuja, revealed the arrest of some suspects linked to the attack of the Church and killing of worshippers in Owo on Sunday, June 5. \

Governor Akeredolu, during a courtesy visit to his office by the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) led by Chairman of the Council, Prince Leke Adegbite, disclosed that the owner of the house the attackers resided before the Owo killing on June 5 has been arrested as well. The governor added that the military are still on the trial of those on the run.

The Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Richard Olatunde, in a statement, cited Governor Akeredolu to have declared: “Now that the military has announced it, I can tell you that five of them have been arrested now. They are still on the trail of the rest. The home where they lodged in Owo and the person that accommodated them before the attack, has also been arrested.

“We did not spare a moment. I am happy that the Chief of Defence Staff has announced it. We have known for a while but we needed not to come out with it because more work is still ongoing. I can confirm that this arrest has been made. And they are still on the trail of some of them.”

The Governor urged the leaders of the Ebira community to admonish their youths not to emulate the bad venture of kidnapping. He emphasized that the Ebiras have lived peacefully together with the people of Ondo State for several decades, saying they have always been supportive and hardworking.

“I want to use this medium to urge our brothers to concentrate on their farming trade. It will be unfortunate to know that the Ebiras in our midst are now involved in kidnapping.

“We are appealing to them not to copy bad things. The traders selling by the roadside should not become informants. We are not fighting them.

“We have seen their numbers, they supported and voted for us during elections. I will call their leaders and talk to them. Our brothers who were kidnapped on their way to Ikare, talk to them. They were taken to Ebira farmsteads.

“For me, we have lived together for too long for this to happen. I am ready to make any effort to ensure that the conviviality that we have enjoyed continues. But we are begging their leaders to urge them not to copy bad things. They are in our midst; we are surrounded by them. The issue of security is key and it’s dynamic,” Akeredolu stated.

The Chairman of the NUJ, Ondo State Council, commended Governor Akeredolu   for supporting the management of OSRC and Owena Press PLC, noting that the upgrade of facilities in the two state-owned media outfits is commendable, the approval of weigh-in allowance for journalists and information officers in the State and Local government services.

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