The remains of the murdered Catholic priest, Fr. David Tanko, of Jalingo Diocese, was laid to rest at the Our Lady Queen of Peace Cathedral, Jalingo, on Tuesday, September 3rd.
Late Fr. Tanko was killed and his remains burnt beyond recognition along the Wukari – Takum road in Taraba State by a suspected faction in the ongoing ethnic violence between the Jukun and Tiv people of the state on August 27th.
He was on his way to attend a peacekeeping meeting when he was attacked and killed.
In his sermon at the funeral mass, the Catholic Bishop of Jalingo Diocese, Bishop Charles Hammawa, described the 42-year-old clergyman as a man of peace.
“Fr. David Tanko was a good man, a good priest, diligent, conscientious, hardworking, amiable and peaceful. He would not set out to offend anyone. He was the kind of person Nigeria needs to come out of the quagmire and mess we are in today. He was part of the peace effort initiated by the Diocese to end the fighting between the two ethnic groups. He met his painful, gruesome and devastating death in the course of this work.
What are the warring parties fighting for? Do the reasons include the attack on ministers and places of worship and church property?
These are disturbing times. The evils of insecurity, chauvinistic and parochial selfish interests of ethnic, religious, regional, political and nepotistic dimensions are plaguing and destroying us and our land. Where is hope going to come from? Where and to whom do we turn to? What do we do? These questions beg for answers before we are consumed and totally annihilated by these self-implanted and self-inflicted cancers. It is certainly not political domination and imposition of one religion on all. The irony is that we know the answers but are not prepared to work with them again for the same selfish reasons.” he said