In a grieving community of Saatenga, situated in the diocese of Fada N’Gourma, in eastern Burkina Faso, the name of Edouard Zoetyenga Yougbare now resonates with sadness and outrage. This dedicated catechist was abducted and brutally murdered in tragic circumstances.

According to information gathered by the correspondent of RECOWA NEWS AGENCY (RECONA) based in Burkina Faso on April 18, Edouard was searching for his donkey near Kamona when a brutal attack was carried out by an armed group, apparently Fulani herdsmen. This attack led to the capture of several individuals, including another catechist named Jean Marie Yougbare. The latter was briefly detained before being released, as the assailants recognized him as a benefactor who had sheltered them during a storm.

Concerned about Edouard’s failure to return home and having learned of the aggression, his family members set out to search for him, finding only his abandoned bicycle. The following day, their worst fears were confirmed when the lifeless body of the catechist was discovered in Pouargogê, approximately seven kilometers from Saatenga. Edouard had been brutally throat-slashed, his hands tied behind his back, bearing witness to the torture he had endured.

According to the interviewed priest, the motive behind this heinous murder could be linked to a dispute between the catechist and a group of Fulanis regarding land ownership. However, no justification can ease the pain and grief inflicted upon the family and the community by this ruthless act of violence.

Edouard Zoetyenga Yougbare was a man of faith and family. Born in 1964 in Kouriogê, he was married to Eulalie Delma and was the father of eight children, tragically mourning the loss of three of his children, two sons, and a daughter.

His dedication to the Church and his community was undeniable, characterized by unwavering commitment and a profound sense of service. His disappearance leaves an insurmountable void in the hearts of those who knew and loved him, and his memory will remain engraved in their minds as that of a man of faith, compassion, and courage.

In this dark time, the community gathers in prayer and solidarity, seeking comfort and justice for the one who was so cruelly taken from them. In honor of the memory of Edouard Zoetyenga Yougbare, may his sacrifice inspire a renewal of peace and reconciliation in this region scarred by violence and conflict.