Police Arrest 2 Priests Conducting Secret Night Masses

  • General Service Unit officers foil a riot in Kisumu in 2017.
    General Service Unit officers foil a riot in Kisumu in 2017.
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  • Police have arrested two Catholic priests in Bungoma for flouting the nationwide curfew and taken into custody along with several nuns, and 44 congregants.

    Daily Nation on Saturday, March 28 reported that one Father Christopher Wanyonyi of Christ the King Cathedral encountered the wrath of police officers after they raided his church on the night of Friday, March 27, 2020.

    He had defied the nationwide directive of a 7 p.m to 5 a.m curfew order as directed by President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday, March 25, 2020.

    Church faithful in Embakasi dispersing following a police raid on March 22, 2020 | ERIC AMBUCHE
    Church faithful in Embakasi dispersing following a police raid on March 22, 2020 | ERIC AMBUCHE
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    The operation was led by County Commissioner Abdi Hassan who was determined to ensure residents in the county adhered to the national order.

    Worshippers who had availed themselves for the night mass scampered for safety, as the officers narrowed in on father Wanyonyi.

    The publication reported that the police seized the items of worship among them sacrament. 

    Hassan expressed his disappointment at the fact that several churches in the county still conducted mass despite an order against public gatherings.

    “We have a ton of respect for the clergy but it is very unfortunate that instead of them leading from the front in the fight against the virus, they are the ones engaging us in unnecessary confrontations,” Hassan stated.

    Hassan revealed that the police had also summoned yet another Catholic Priest, Father John Ogolla who he stated was also conducting secret masses.

    "We have also summoned Ogolla and we can assure you that legal action will be taken against him. If he does not present himself before the court when required, we will go after him," Hassan stated. 

    Police across the country were on patrol ensuring that members of the public adhered to the curfew failure to which, legal action would be taken.

    National Police Service spokesperson Charles Owino had warned that anyone caught violating the curfew directive would attract a 3-month jail sentence.

    However, this would be served once the Coronavirus pandemic is contained.

    The persons arrested would be released on bail or free bonds in line with a directive by Chief Justice David Maraga and presented in court at a later date.

    A driver who was manhandled by police as the curfew commenced on Friday, March 27, 2020
    A driver who was manhandled by police as the curfew commenced on Friday, March 27, 2020
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