By David Atangana
The release of five Mamfe Priests and other church servants has been conditioned on the payment of a ransom of 25million CFA, MMI has gathered.
Amongst them are five priests, one Reverend Sister and three domestic servants.
They were kidnapped on September 16, 2022 in Nchang village, Manyu Division of the South West Region.
The church from which they were kidnapped was reduced to arshes by the kidnappers.
A source close to one of the kidnapped priests told MMI that the kidnappers had initially demanded for a ransom of 60 million FCFA.
The family source said negotiations were made before the sum dropped to 25 million FCFA.
“They were demanding 60 Million, then 30 million and that if they are considering something lower, it should be 25 Million FCFA”, the source said.
This development is coming few days after a video was released showing the kidnapped persons in deplorable living conditions.
One of the priests in the circulated video pleaded with Church authorities to heed to demand of the abductors for them to regain freedom.
“So far it has not been easy. If you look at us you will see our faces are very unhappy” the priest said.
“It is quite difficult and we are only begging my Lord that you do everything possible to get us out of here. It is a matter of do or die” the Rev. pleaded
Their health situations are reportedly in bad state with no medical attention.
“I have been very sick and my brothers too are not feeling fine at all. My lord listen to these boys and whatever they ask of you.” he further implored.
The kidnap of the priests and attach on church structures has received widespread condemnation. One of the pro-separatists who was unhappy with the treatment of the priests begged for them to be released:
“What type of independence are we fighting for and humiliating men of God in this way. Who will pray for us? This is totally unacceptable my people. Please I’m on my knees release them. I can stop crying after watching them pleading for their lives. If they did anything wrong please forgive and release them please” – they wrote in an Ambazonian forum.
This is not the first time that the clergy and the church has been attacked in the deteriorating conflict that is crippling the Anglophone regions of Cameroon. The late Christian Cardinal Tumi was also a victim of kidnapping by separatist fighters, shortly before his death.
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