The six states in the South West region of Nigeria on Monday commenced three days of mourning in honour of the victims of the church attack in Owo.
This is coming days after governors in the region resolved to mourn the victims within the period following a meeting held last Friday to review the state of insecurity in the South West.
Bayelsa Times had reported that no fewer than 40 people were killed and many others injured when gunmen attacked worshippers at St Francis Catholic Church in Owo, the headquarters of Owo Local Government Area of Ondo State.
The incident generates several condemnation with various individuals and groups calling on the government to ensure the assailants were arrested and brought to justice.
Days after the incident, the Federal Government linked the killings to the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP) – an account that Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State said was speculative.
In line with the resolutions of last Friday’s meeting, Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu Ondo State extended the mourning period in the state till Wednesday, following the initial seven days period which began last Monday.
He directed that all flags in the state be flown at half-mast for the three days period, to honour those who lost their lives to the attack.
‘The recent attack on St Francis Catholic Church, Owaluwa Street, Owo, compels immediate intervention in the whole of the South West to nip the insidious phenomenon of insurgency in the bud.
”The meeting, consequently, took decisions, some of which are expected to have far-reaching implications in the quest to protect lives and property in the region.
”The meeting deliberated on issues that pose a great risk to the collective well-being of the people and resolved as follows:
”The Governors condemn, in very strong terms, the horrendous crime perpetrated by terrorists against the people and residents of Owo, Ondo State, and, by extension, the peace-loving people of the South West.
”The Governors sympathise with the victims of the mindless attack in Owo.
”The Governors agreed to declare a 3-day mourning period in memory of the victims of the 5th June, 2022 terror attack on St Francis Catholic, Owaluwa Street, Owo, Ondo State, starting from Monday, 13th June, to Wednesday, 15th, June, 2022 to symbolise our collective loss across all South Western States in Nigeria.
”The meeting agreed that all the Governors should direct the flying of Flags at Half Mast in all public buildings, facilitates and official residences across all the States in the South West in honour of the victims of the Owo terror attack.”
Similarly, the Oyo State government, in a statement by the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs Olubamiwo Adeosun, directed that flags be flown at half-mast for three days.
Authorities in the remaining states are expected to issue a similar directive, as the governors sternly condemned the attack.