The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Mathew Hassan Kukah has announced the suspension of masses in the state.
This was contained in a statement signed by the Director, Social Communications of the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, Rev. Fr Christopher Omotosho, on Saturday.
According to the statement, the decision comes following the curfew imposed by the State Government after a protest that erupted by angry youths demanding the release of those arrested by the Police in connection with the gruesome killing of Deborah Samuel for alleged blasphemy.
The statement reads, “During the protest, groups of youths led by some adults in the background attacked the Holy Family Catholic Cathedral at Bello Way, destroying church glass windows, those of the Bishop Lawton Secretariat and vandalised a community bus parked within the premises. St. Kevin’s Catholic Church Gidan Dere, Eastern By-pass, was also attacked and partly burnt; windows of the new hospital complex under construction, in the same premises were shattered.
“They were promptly dispersed by a team of Mobile Policemen before they could do further damage. The hoodiums also attacked the Bakhita Centre located along Aliyu Jodi Road and burnt down a bus within the premises.
“In a reaction, the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Most Reverend Matthew Hassan Kukah commended the Governor of Sokoto State, H. E. Alhaji Amina Tambuwal for acting promptly by declaring the 24-hour curfew to stem the protests.
“He also commended the security forces for promptly rising to the occasion to prevent further damage at our facilities. In all, no life was lost.
“Contrary to information in circulation, we wish to disclaim that there was an attack of any sort on the residence of Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah. The Bishop appeals to Christians to remain law abiding and pray for the return of normalcy.
“All masses in Sokoto metropolis have been suspended until the curfew is lifted.”