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Cardinal Arinze tipped as next Pope

By News Express on 12/02/2013

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For the second time in eight years, Nigeria’s Cardinal Francis Arinze has been rated as a potential Pope in the wake of the vacancy to be created by the resignation of the incumbent effective February 28.

Arinze (shown in photo) had been widely expected to become the first Black Pope following the death of Pope John Paul II but he was trounced by Germany’s Ratzinger who became Pope Benedict XVI and the 265th Pope in 2005.

William Hill bookmakers of Britain has named 80-year-old Arinze as one of the favourite to succeed Benedict, who shocked the world yesterday by announcing his resignation as a result of ill health. Arinze, according to Hill, is favoured with odds of 2-1, followed by Peter Turkson of Ghana at 5-2 and Marc Ouellet of Canada.

“When we opened betting last time around, in 2005, Francis Arinze was our favourite,” a William Hill spokesman told AFP.

“His odds did drift towards the date of the announcement when Joseph Ratzinger (later Pope Benedict XVI) became the favourite, but he remained in the top three.

“Also, when Ratzinger became Pope, Arinze took over from him as cardinal bishop of Velletri-Segni (a Catholic diocese close to Rome) — it could be that he’ll follow in his footsteps again.”

Another bookmaker, Coral, has tipped Arinze as the likeliest successor to Pope Benedict with odds of 7-4, followed by Turkson at 2-1 and Ouellet in third place at 5-1.

Irish bookmaker Paddy Power has however favoured Ouellet as the new Pope with odds of 5-2, followed by Arinze at 3-1 and Turkson at 4-1.

Arinze had been widely considered “papabile,” or a potential during the 2005 conclave of the Vatican’s College of Cardinals but lost out to Benedict, who is stepping down at 85.

Source News Express

Posted 12/02/2013 09:06:41 AM


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