A Catholic priest in Arua Diocese, Fr Edward Eguma, has been dragged to police on charges of child neglect.
The child’s mother, Florence Idede, 24, a resident of Onduparaka trading centre in Arua City reported a case of child neglect against Fr Eguma at Arua Central Police Station vide SD REF 45/22/02/2021.
Fr Eguma is the curate of Nyadri Town Parish in Maracha district and according to Idede, he impregnated her, extended support for a while, and later dumped her with an 18-month-old boy.
Daily Express reports that Idede, a senior three student of Logiri Girls Secondary School said she dropped out of school due to lack of school fees and Fr Eguma approached her grandfather at Indika village in Ludara sub-county, Koboko district asking to stay with her at the parish.
“I lived with the priest in the parish and he later asked me to sleep in a separate room from where he forcefully had sex with me on several occasions,” Idede said.
“On realising I got pregnant, Fr Eguma decided to rent a house for me at Onduparaka trading centre for the last two years. However, for the last two months, he has since abandoned his responsibility and stopped paying rent and providing money for feeding, treatment, and other basic needs,” she added.
According to Idede, the priest asked the landlord to evict her from the house but the landlord advised her to report the matter to police, Daily Express reports.
The West Nile Region Child and Family Protection Unit Officer, Jimmy Anguyo, confirmed the case of child neglect registered against Fr Eguma adding that the police is investigating the matter swiftly in order for him to take up responsibility.
When Fr Eguma was contacted last evening (Wednesday), he demanded to know the role of a journalist in the case, asking if the journalist is a police officer, or CID officer investigating the case.
Even after it was made clear to Fr Eguma that the matter had been registered at police and exposed to the media, he said a wrong person was contacted before blaming the police for disclosing the matter to the media without discussing it with him.