Gunmen on Friday kidnapped an Italian priest in Benin City, Edo State.
According to the website of the Italian Catholic Bishops Conference, Avvenire, the victim, 63-year-old Maurizio Pallu, had been working for three years in Nigeria before his kidnap.
The report stated that Pallu was taken alongside four other people after arriving at Benin on Thursday.
Avvenire said Pallu was transferred from Haarlem, the Netherlands, to Nigeria.
Quoting the Archbishop of Abuja, Cardinal John Onaiyekan, the Catholic bishops’ website said, “We have faith and continue to hope that in a short time, Pallu will be freed.
“Authorities are doing everything to locate him. The kidnappers should let him go soon because it is not easy to bring an Italian around in the forest without being seen.”
Meanwhile, the Archdiocese of Rome has expressed apprehension and worry for Pallu’s safety, saying the church “is united in prayer for his liberation.” When called on Friday, the Edo State Police Public Relations Officer, Moses Nkombe, said he would get back to our correspondent on the situation, but he had yet to do so as of press time.