Father Lazarus Ejoyi, the former priest of Kijomoro Parish in Arua, Uganda, is nursing a broken arm and swollen buttocks he sustained in an attack by Monsignor Kasto Adeti, the Vicar General of Arua Diocese. Father Ejoyi says he was talking to his brother on the phone when Monsignor Adeti assaulted him with a club over the weekend. The incident happened in the parish priest’s residence at Ediofe Cathedral.
“I was here talking on phone and he came and beat me, threatening me that I should not talk. I ignored him, he went back to his room as I continued to talk and then returned with his walking stick, he hit me three time at my bottom,” Father Ejoyi said.
Furthermore, he says this is the fifth time Monsignor Kasto Adeti has attacked him since mid-last year for allegedly declining to vacate the priest’s residence as directed by the Bishop.
Father Ejoyi, who was removed by Bishop Ocan Odoki from Kijomoro Parish in 2017 and never redeployed, says Monsignor Adeti assaulted him on grounds that he isn’t supposed to be at the diocese. In November last year, Monsignor Adeti locked Father Ejoyi’s room to stop him from accessing it but it was opened by officers from Arua Central Police station. Police cautioned Monsignor Adeti from trespassing on Father Ejoyi’s room, saying he is entitled to stay at the parish.
Monsignor Adeti says that he acted out of anger. He says he was provoked by the endless and loud insults directed at him by Father Ejoyi whenever he speaks on phone. He explained that on the fateful day he was in his room which is adjacent to the balcony where Father Ejoyi was seated while he spoke on phone, where he overheard the priest saying that he (Monsignor Adeti) is one of his tormentors.
“When I heard this I came out picked a stick confronted Father Ejoyi out of anger. I gave him several lashes on the thigh just to stop him from continuing to tell lies and insult us. My intention was not to hurt him,” he said.