One Pastor Paul Morah of Enyibichiri community in Ikwo Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, has been arrested for allegedly defiling over 24 male children, between the ages of 12 and 17 years.
The state Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, DSP George Okafor, who confirmed the report on Wednesday, said he would brief journalists when investigation was concluded.
The PPRO said Morah, who hails from Orji River in Enugu State and claimed to be a reverend with Anglican Church, was on a pastoral mission in Ebonyi.
It was alleged that he used a diabolical handkerchief to lure some of the children, especially those who tried to resist him.
The PPRO said, “We are aware of the matter. It has just been transferred from Ikwo Police Division to the headquarters.
“We are still investigating the matter. But latest tomorrow, we will get back to press.”
Speaking on the incident, the community town union president, Hon. Nwoba Sylvanus, said, “It was in the early hours of yesterday morning that one of my chairmen, Sunday Nwibo, of a sub-ward called me and brought the information to me.
“I told him he should go and arrange some boys to go to the man and arrest the man for him to be handed over to the police for investigation. At that hour it happened, we only identified four children – the oldest is about 17 years.
“One of them is in primary six, two are in JSS II and the other one is in JSS III. But from the investigation of the divisional police officer at Noyo junction, the children are up to 24 now.”
Earlier, the Coordinator of Ikwo East Development Centre, Hon. Chinedu Ogbuoji, confirmed the incident and described it as pathetic.
Ogbuoji said, “The incident is a pathetic one because these days some people hide themselves under the umbrella of religion to perpetrate evil.
“He told us that his name is Paul Morah from Enugu State. He claimed to be a pastor but when we interrogated him further, he said he spent only three weeks in the church before he was suspended by the Anglican Church in Enyibichiri community.
“People from my area reported the incident to me and I intervened with the support of the town union leader and the youth.
“We went there; he was apprehended and handed over to the police. We want to assure you of more investigation. Some of the children claimed they are members of the church. Nobody knew what he used to lure the children but we heard that at times, he uses diabolical handkerchief to lure them.”
“He told us that he is a pastor in Anglican Church but when one of the pastors of Anglican Church was contacted, he said they have suspended him for over three months.
“The pastor said when he came to them, after observing him; they discovered he was fake and was not working in line with the doctrines of the church,” the coordinator stated.