Pope Francis has appointed Archbishop Ignatius Ayau Kaigama as the new Catholic Archbishop of Abuja.
Pope Francis, who was represented by Apostolic Nuncio to Nigeria, Archbishop Antonio Guido Filipazzi, made the announcement, Monday, in Abuja during the opening ceremony of the first plenary meeting of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria (CBCN).
Kaigama will take over from His Eminence, John Cardinal Onaiyekan, who clocked the retirement age of 75, on January 29, 2019.
Kaigama, who is currently the Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of Jos and immediate past President of the CBCN, is a priest of Jukun origin from Taraba State.
“We congratulate and pray for Archbishop Kaigama. I know that it is not easy for him. But I told him like Abraham, go out of your land in the land God will show you and God will bless you and make you the father of many people,” Filipazzi said.
Born on July 31, 1958, Kaigama studied for the priesthood at St. Augustine’s Major Seminary in Jos, and Rome respectively.
In 2000, Kaigama was appointed by Pope John Paul II to succeed the late Archbishop Gabriel Ganaka as Archbishop of Jos.
The new Abuja Archbishop, Kaigama, was ordained on June 6, 1981 and was appointed Bishop of Jalingo by Pope John Paul II, before he was later consecrated as bishop on April 23, 1995.