CRISIS is brewing between the Catholic Diocese of Auchi in Edo State
and the family of the deceased Parish priest of St Thomas Moore
Catholic Church, Sobe, Owan West Local Government Council, Rev. Father
Peter Ayala, who was found dead in his room last Sunday.
While the church believes that the Rev. Father was killed while
cleaning his gun that Sunday morning, the family toldVanguardthat the
church was too hasty in reaching such conclusion, asserting that
somebody may have murdered their son.
A family source who does not want his name in print,
toldVanguardyesterday that "the church has not helped matters. Wherein
that police investigation is still on-going they are saying that it
could be suicide andit was pasted on the website of the Catholic
Diocese of Auchi. The story they told us, the family members, does not
look straight to us.
"What we have been told is that they found him dead with the gun by
his side, then there was a spanner beside him, which looks like he was
servicing the gun. The question is that: if you shoot a gun does it
not vibrate? So if the Rev Father was servicing the gun and it
actually went off then that gun should not be found by his side. So
the whole thing looks fishy. We are still asking the question: what
killed him? The story they are giving us does not make sense to us.
"Remember, nobody was there, nobody has said he was there when it
happened. So we are only creating scenario that this is the
possibility. But beyond everything, should the church pronounce before
the police that he was killed by the gun when the police is yet to
investigate the case?"
However, the family still wants to know what or who killed our brother
because the explanation we have does not make sense to us. He was one
of the most gentlemen men I have ever seen, that is why we believe
that something is wrong somewhere" the source told Vanguard.
According to him, "although the body of Rev. Fr. Peter Ayala was found
lying lifelessly in his pool of blood with a locally manufactured gun
and abig spanner on his body and floor, respectively, they were only
some of the clues on which experts examinations must be effected to
ascertain more authentic proofs of what had led to the death."
He berated some section of the media that concluded that the late
priest committed suicide. "Whatever must be stated by anybody hitherto
were probabilities in as much as experts examinations could prove
otherwise. For all others who are prone to engage in some innuendos as
regard the death of Rev. Fr. Peter Ayala, I wish to caution so that
they keep in mindthat death is death, whenever, wherever and in
whatever way and manner it occurs, it cannot and should constitute an
occasion for derision, uncharitable assumptions and calumny against
the living, the dead or both.
Bishop Dunia said he knew the late "calm, modest and well behaved
Peter Ayala who worked under me as a seminarian when I was the parish
priest of St Joseph Catholic Church, Emeora seventeen years ago and as
a priest who collaborated with me nonetheless similarly in the Diocese
of Auchi until his passage from this sinful world."
Rev. Fr. Ayala was ordained in 1997