Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
All roads, in Benue State, on Tuesday, led to the Sesugh Maria Pilgrimage Center, Ayati, as the bodies of the two Catholic priests and other worshippers mowed down by Fulani herdsmen at St. Ignatuis Quarshi Parish Ayar-Mbalom, Gwer Local Government area of the state in March, were laid to rest.
As early as 7:00a.m, thousands of Catholic faithful and sympathisers from across the country started arriving the Benue of the burial located along the Makurdi-Otukpo highway close to Ikpayongo town.
By 9:00a.m, corpses of the slain worshippers, in white caskets, with their names inscribed on them, were conveyed in a truck and two ambulances to their final resting place amid wailing from families and friends for the requiem mass.
But just as the requiem mass was commencing, the heavens opened and a heavy but not so breezy rain poured, a development which made Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, many catholic Bishops, traditional rulers, politicians as well as dignitaries from all walks of life defied the rains to attend the burial service.
Meanwhile, all markets, banks, schools, offices as well as other business areas were under lock and keys especially, in Makurdi, the Benue State capital in compliance with the work free day declared by the state government.
At the time of filing this report, the Vice President was yet to give his speech and the final interment yet to take place.