VOICE OF THE PERSECUTED

Home » Posts tagged 'Nigeria'

Tag Archives: Nigeria

Archives

VIDEO: Egyptian TV News Report Alleges Turkey Supplying Weapons to Nigeria’s Boko Haram

Throughout the years, detail after detail has emerged of Turkey’s leadership supporting the violence of the world’s most notorious Islamic terrorists. For the most part, U.S. and European main stream media had basically remained silent of Turkey’s alleged ties to Islamic terrorism. According to an Egyptian television news program which aired between 2014-2015, Turkey is clearly a terrorist state with a broad reach. Raymond Ibrahim is the Shillman Fellow in Journalism at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an expert on the Middle East and Islam. Ibrahim told CBN he’s not surprised by the Ten.tv report. See video.

Four Christian Farmers Killed by Muslim Fulani Herdsmen in Kaduna State, Nigeria

Professor Felix Ilesanmi, chaplain of Trinity Chapel at the Federal University of Technology, Yola, was kidnapped in northeastern Nigeria. (Morning Star News) [modified]

Nigeria (Morning Star News) – Muslim Fulani herdsmen on Nov. 14 killed four Christians in north-central Nigeria, attacking them with machetes as they slept in their beds, area residents said.

The four members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Agban village, near Kagoro in Kaduna state’s Kaura County, were farmers who were killed in the early morning hours, villagers said.

“Hosea Ayuba, Ado Adamu, Abagu Danladi and Kusa Danladi were killed by armed Muslim Fulani herdsmen,” area resident Derek Christopher told Morning Star News in a text message. “They were attacked with machetes, and their corpses had machetes cut wounds. The herdsmen came to the area in a minivan and a motorbike.”

A relative of Ayuba, Williams Adamu, mourned the loss, calling the latest attack in the area, “one too many.” Herdsmen also attacked Agban in 2017 and 2015.

A member of the Seventh-day Adventist church in Agban, Gideon Akut, and another village Christian, Didam Ashio, also said that the four named Christians had been killed by Fulani herdsmen.

“Please help me pray for my dear Agban community,” Ashio told Morning Star News.

Christopher said area Christians mobilized to pursue the herdsmen, who reportedly also stole three cows, apprehended the killers and turned them over to police in Kafanchan town, Jema’a County.

Kaduna State Police Command spokesman Yakubu Sabo said in a statement that the murders were reported at 3 a.m. to the Kafanchan station “through our operatives at a security checkpoint.”

“A team of police detectives led by the Area Commander, Kafanchan, acted on a tip-off and intercepted a bus with Reg. No. BLD 43 XA conveying three suspected armed men,” he said. “Investigation is already on over the killing at Agban.”

He reportedly identified the two captured suspects as Sadiq Umar and Umar Abubakar, both of Unguwan Nungu of Jema’a County. Efforts were underway to capture fleeing accomplices, he added.

Previously herdsmen attacked Agban village on Feb. 21, 2017, shooting dead five Christians – Emmanuel Gabriel, Kalat Boniface, Victor Joseph, Lucky Iliya and Zakaria Kabok. Herdsmen also attacked Agban on Feb. 20, 2015, sources said.

Kidnapped Professor Released

On the same day, Nov. 14 as the attack in Kaduna state, gunmen in military fatigues in northeast Nigeria kidnapped a chaplain at a public university, sources said. He was reportedly released within a week.

The five men kidnapped professor Felix Ilesanmi from the campus of Modibbo Adama University of Technology (MAUTECH) in Yola, Adamawa state, at about 8:30 p.m., at gunpoint, area residents told Morning Star News.

Chaplain of Trinity Chapel at the Federal University of Technology, Yola (FUTY) on the MAUTECH campus, Ilesanmi teaches at FUTY’s department of Urban and Regional Planning.

Area resident Rebecca Musa told Morning Star News he was taken from his apartment on the university campus in the Girei area of Yola by five armed gunmen who took him away on motorbikes. Zidon Love, another resident of the area in Yola, said Ilesanmi was kidnapped at 8:30 p.m. by five gunmen in military uniform.

“They collected his wife’s phone also,” Love said. “They carried him from his house within the university in a vehicle, but on getting outside the school put him on a [motor]bike and rode off.”

Ilesanmi is also area chairman of the Nigeria Fellowship of Evangelical Students (NIFES), Love said. On Oct. 16, sources said, he had led Christian students and staff members of the university through teachings on the power of the Holy Spirit in leading people to Christ.

Adamawa State Police Command spokesman Suleiman Nguroje was quoted in local press on Tuesday (Nov. 19) as saying Ilesanmi had been released. He said the unidentified kidnappers abandoned him, but terms of the release were unknown.

In October, a professor of Soil Science at the university, Adamu Zata, was kidnapped. He had also been kidnapped in October 2018.

Nigeria ranked 12th on Open Doors’ 2019 World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most persecution.

Muslim Fulani Herdsmen Kill Two Christians in Kaduna State, Nigeria

Funeral of two Christians slain in Agom village, southern Kaduna state. (Morning Star News)

Nigeria (Morning Star News) – Muslim Fulani herdsmen in north-central Nigeria on early Thursday morning (Nov. 14) hacked an 87-year-old Christian to death by machete and killed another by gunshot, an area resident said.

A group of herdsmen attacked predominantly Christian Agom village in southern Kaduna state’s Sanga Country at 4:30 a.m., area resident Gabriel Yakubu told Morning Star News by text message. Monday Kura, 87, and Emmanuel Agom, 48, both members of the Evangelical Reformed Church of Christ (ERCC), were killed as they slept in their rooms, he said.

“The Fulani herdsmen cut Monday Kura, 87 years, with a machete until he died, while Emmanuel, 48 years, was shot dead with a gun,” Yakubu said. “Sir, we need your prayers as my village is on fire and we are not getting any protection from the government.”

It was the first herdsmen attack on the village, which is four kilometers from the town of Gwantu, he said. The ERCC church is the only church in the village, he said.

The attack could not be immediately confirmed. Agom is located along Wasa Station Road, west of Gwantu, between Kwana Nunbu and Gani Sarki villages, he said.

Sanga County was the site of a Muslim Fulani herdsmen attack on March 16 that killed 10 Christians and burned about 30 houses. That attack also occurred as residents of Nandu Gbok village were sleeping.

The assault followed other attacks in southern Kaduna state that took the lives of 130 Christians.

Christians make up 51.3 percent of Nigeria’s population, while Muslims living primarily in the north and middle belt account for 45 percent.

Nigeria ranked 12th on Open Doors’ 2019 World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most persecution.

Tonight on Persecution Watch: I Hear Your SOS

(Voice of the Persecuted) As I head out to my local grocery store, a new song plays on the radio in my car and I listen.  Right away my mind quickens my heart and I think of the children and young teenagers of Northern Nigeria.  The words to the song sing on the airwaves,

“You are not hidden.  There’s never been a moment you were forgotten.   You are not hopeless, though you have been broken.  Your innocence stolen.  I hear you whisper underneath you breath.  I hear your SOS – your SOS.  I will send out an army to find you in the middle of the darkest fight – it’s true.  I will Rescue you.”

About the same time as Lauren Daigles song hit the airwaves here in the States, I noticed a news article that popped up on my phone.  It was a story of two young Nigerian girls, Binta Umma and Maimuna Musa.  They had been kidnapped by Boko Haram in 2016.  The girls’ family members were killed in front of them and they were taken away deep into the forest.  There in the jungle and far from home, or any help, they were married off to Boko Haram soldiers.  They were verbally and physically abused, often food was withheld, and they were forbidden to leave their grass huts.  One of the girls became pregnant and gave birth at age 14, but within a year the baby died from a fever.

The soldier husbands decided it was time for their wives to become suicide bombers.  They told the girls to think more of God and begin to prepare for their mission.  Boko Haram often deceive women by telling them they will not die on such a mission.  Others said that even if you die you will be in paradise.  Both girls were scared when they heard they would be forced to carry a bomb to kill people.  They had only two choices, escape or die.  The militants readied the girls in a four-day training period. They were told where to go, how to explode the bomb, and where they could find potential victims.

Binta lamented that as soon as the vest was tied to her body, she lost any hope of survival.  The militants sent her out on a day when that was cloudy with no sunshine. She walked until she reached a major road and looked for soldiers to rescue her.  She did not want to attack people; she didn’t want to die.  Both girls having similar stories and tell of how they just kept walking until they found government soldiers.  They did find them and fortunately for these girls, the soldiers were looking for them too.

These were not your typical soldiers trained in warfare, but rather trained to disarm children and teens who were being used as suicide bombers.   They were looking for children with bombs strapped to them. They could help them by disarming, detonating or destroying the bombs strapped to their bodies. These soldiers were on a very dangerous mission to set these young ones free and stop an attack before it happened.  These are a new breed of soldiers called EOD specialists who work for the Nigerian government and trained by the US Army.  They risk their own lives in order to set these children free from the suicide mission they have been forced to perform by Boko Haram.  This scene is played out over and over in Northern Nigeria.  A place where it is estimated that Boko Haram is holding 10,000 plus children captive and enslaved—waiting to send them on a deadly suicide mission.

Today, Nigeria is a country rich in oil and natural gas.  It’s seeking to present itself as the image of modern Africa, but the country is far from united.  The country has nearly 200 million people with 230 different ethnic groups and in the year 2050, Nigeria is expected to out-populate the USA.  Although Nigeria collects billions of dollars in oil revenue each year, more than 60% of Nigerians live in poverty.  Many on less than $2 a day.  In the North East, the poverty rate is even higher.  The nature of governance in this area is poor to begin with.  Poverty, illiteracy, a high infant mortality rate, inequality, along with neglect by those with political power have helped sow a rebellious brand of Islam in the North East.   Islamist leaders use as their role model one of the world’s most brutal and dogmatic Islamist movements.  It is a recipe for disaster and a watershed about to burst.   Millions have been dispersed having to flee their villages where Boko Haram and the Fulani Herdsman have waged a so-called Holy war.  No one is safe. Not a Christian or a Muslim.  If you do not conform to the extreme interpretations of the Quran, you are considered an infidel and hunted down and killed.

Lauren’s song “Rescue” continues…There is no distance that cannot be covered over and over.  You’re not defenseless.  I’ll be your shelter.  I’ll be your armor.  I hear you whisper underneath your breath.  I hear your SOS-your SOS.  I will send out an army to find you in the middle of the darkest night- it’s true.  I will rescue you.  I will never stop marching to reach you in the middle of the hardest fight- it’s true. I will rescue you.

The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world.  On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds!  2 Corinthians 10:4

Below is a list of prayer points for tonight’s Prayer Watch call.  You are invited to join us as we pray for the Children of Nigeria. We will take up our weapons of righteousness and do battle in prayer on behalf of these dear children and the nation of Nigeria.  The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective and Jesus wins…Jesus wins every battle!  James 5:16

Sister Leigh, Prayer Team Moderator

Prayer Points following call details

From any location on your phone

Time: 

9:00 PM EST

8:00 PM CST+

7:00 PM MST

6:00 PM PST

Call in number: 712 775-7035      

Access Code: 281207#

Recommended: For those who may be subject to added charges for conference calls. Please download the app, it’s free!

MOBILE APP: Free Conference Call HD also provides a quick and easy way for you to dial into conference calls without having to remember the dial-in credentials. Save all of your conference call dial-in numbers and access codes using this free app. With the Free Conference Call HD you can instantly dial into a conference call via 3G/4G data network and or regular mobile carrier. Google Play link  or App Store – iTunes

Prayer Points:

Groups, like Boko Haram, who align themselves with ISIS strap bombs to the waists of young children and teens.  They call them ‘cub fighters’.  These children and teens who number more than 10,000 are held against their will and are sent into marketplaces in villages or anywhere else people gather.  At least 57 children and teens have died in northern Nigeria after being forced to carry out suicide missions. 67% of them were girls.

🙏 Let’s Pray for these dear ones. Pray that the love of Jesus would reach them.  Pray that they would not be lost in suicide missions, but that Jesus would make a way of escape for them.  Pray that they would find freedom from the bondage of the teachings of the Quran and would come to know Jesus and His great love for them.

As you can imagine, finding these children in dense forests and roads to disarm, detonate the bombs is a VERY dangerous job.  Many of the EOD Soldiers have lost their own lives in trying to dismantle the bombs.  Boko Haram also uses remote control devices to set the bombs off if the children try not to complete their mission.  When an EOD soldier is approaching the child or teen, a Boko Haram member is following them and will detonate the bomb as soon as the soldier reaches the child.

🙏Pray for the brave team of EOD Soldiers.  Pray for their protection.  Pray that they will continue to find ways to stay a step ahead of the tactics of Boko Haram and find new ways to deal with them.  Pray for the US Army personnel who are willingly helping these brave soldiers to fight the war on Boko Haram’s suicide bombing practices.  Pray for their salvation and a continued amount of success!   

Nigeria has millions of professing Christians, but the church has been largely silent on the mounting situation with Boko Haram and the Fulani herdsman.  Part of that is because of disunity between the different denominations.  Only recently has the church begun to come together to act as one body and stand together on this.

🙏Let’s pray that the church would rise up and become fully unified.  Pray that the Christians would unite in prayer and find commonalities between themselves so that they would stand strong together and that they would take up the sword of Truth, the Word of God and put on their Shields of faith and stand together and begin to seek Heaven for an end to the reign and rule of Boko Haram over their people and lands.  God says that if my people who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and I will heal their land. 

The situation in Northern Nigeria needs international attention.  If left without restraint or the attention of the media the situation is likely to become a watershed of people fleeing to European nations ill equipped to handle the massive migration of the millions of people who are already displaced by Boko Haram and the Fulani herdsman and the death toll will rise just as it did like the war in the Rwanda genocide where 1/2 million people were slaughtered before anyone acted.  People in Nigeria are begging for help.  They are asking if anyone in the West is listening?

🙏Pray that the news media will report in headline news the situation in Northern Nigeria with Boko Haram and the Fulani herdsman.  Pray for Leaders around the world and the United Nations to sound the alarm and respond to the crisis.  Former Congressman Frank Wolf from Virginia is urging Christians here in the US to call their congressman and ask that a special Envoy be appointed so that we can be informed and begin to step in to respond to the needs of this crisis.  In the past, appointing a Convoy has been a successful pathway to resolving conflicts such as this.

🙏Let’s Pray that there will be a barrage of media cover and attention given to this crisis.  Pray that the stories of these children and teens will get into the news media outlets and across the internet.  Pray that Churches and aid groups will become informed and made aware of the needs of Nigerians and will willing help and pray.  Pray that world leaders and the United Nations will take action to stop Boko Haram and the Fulani herdsman.

Jihadist believe Islam will not be lost in Nigeria. They have chosen this area because of the country’s vulnerabilities. Based on statistics, they dream Nigeria will outpace the USA in population by 2050 and be a nation for Allah.

🙏Let’s Pray that the plans of the enemy will not be successful.  Let’s Pray for the militants of ISIS, Boko Haram and the Fulani herdsman that Christ will be victorious in their lives.  Pray that they come to know that Allah only offers the way of destruction and Jesus offers the Way, the Life and the Truth.  Pray that these who have been deceived will have a desire to lay down their weapons of warfare and trade them for weapons of righteousness found only in Jesus Christ and be set free. 

Leah Sharibu is one of the 100 schoolgirls abducted from Dapchi School in Nigeria on February 19, 2018.  Because Leah would not renounce her faith in Jesus Christ, she has been held captive while her other classmates where let go. Boko Haram has declared her to be a slave for life.  As Christians, we know that in Truth Leah will never be a slave to Boko Haram because of her declared love and confession of faith in Christ. She is now a bond servant to the Lord Jesus Christ, and no one can ever separate her from His Love.

🙏Let’s pray for endurance and continued grace for Leah to handle the challenge with which she has been given.  Pray that while she is in captivity she is surrounded by the presence of the Holy Spirit.  Pray that she is unharmed.  Pray that she is able to testify to others the love of her Savior and given the grace and strength to show compassion on her captors.  Pray that God will make a way of escape for her and she will be set free.  Pray that the world knows who Leah Sharibu is and that Leah’s captivity and testimony will not go unnoticed.

With an ever-exploding population, is Nigeria is ripe for the Harvest?

🙏Lets Pray audacious prayers that those 200 million souls will not be lost to Islam or any other deception but instead there will be a sweeping move of the Spirit of God across the land of Nigeria and the Harvest will be great in so much that it will turn that 200 million number on its head for Jesus Christ!  Pray for the Harvest!  Pray for the Rescuer of Nigeria to be Victorious!

And finally, does prayer work? Yes, it does!  Recently 6 girls who were abducted were released.  Their parents said that every time Boko Haram would call to demand a ransom, they could hear the girls in the background being tortured but they kept praying.  Many others also prayed for their girls and today they praise God for the release of their loved ones, and they attribute the prayers of the Christians to the release of their children!

Girls, Staff Members Kidnapped from Christian-Run High School Released

Engravers’ College sign in Kakau Daji village, Chikun County, Kaduna state, Nigeria. (Morning Star News)

(Morning Star News) – Six girls and two staff members from a Christian-run high school in north-central Nigeria have been released after torture and payment of a ransom, according to local reports.

The girls and staff members kidnapped at gunpoint on Oct. 3 in Kaduna state from Engravers’ College in Kakau Daji village, Chikun County near Kaduna city, were released by their Muslim Fulani captors on Oct. 26, one of girls’ parents told Nigerian reporters.

“Several people prayed in churches and mosques,” Ohemu Fredrick told reporters. “Through their prayers, God brought us help. God used a former governor of Kaduna state to assist us.”

Fredrick did not disclose the former governor’s name or the ransom amount. He said the former official offered the children and staff members free medical treatment, as the hostages were reportedly tortured each time the kidnappers called the parents so they could hear their screams, according to another parent whose identity was withheld.

That parent reportedly said that after the kidnappers set them free, police picked them up and dropped them off near a toll gate about five kilometers (three miles) from the city center.

Suspected to be herdsmen who have carried out numerous kidnappings and attacks in southern Kaduna state, the armed Fulani invaded the school at 12:20 a.m.

Shunom Giwa, vice principal of Engravers’ College, previously told Morning Star News that initially five armed herdsmen appeared at the door of his house and spoke with each other in the Fulani language. Others with the school’s vice principal arrived shortly after they told him to lie down, and Giwa escaped, he said.

The school, which is open to both Christian and non-Christian students, has a secular curriculum in accordance with Nigeria’s Ministry of Education but includes a Christian perspective, and students take Christian Religious Knowledge as a subject, an official told Morning Star News.

The school has a student population of 100, with rampant insecurity in the state compelling some parents to withdraw their children from the school, Giwa said.

The village lies in the kidnapping belt of the state and is on the route to Kwanti village, where Morning Star News last year reported the displacement of many Christians due to kidnappings by armed Fulani Herdsmen, according to area residents.

Nigeria ranked 12th on Open Doors’ 2019 World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most persecution.

Six Girls, Two Staff Members Kidnapped from Christian-Run High School in Nigeria

Engravers’ College sign in Kakau Daji village, Chikun County, Kaduna state, Nigeria. (Morning Star News)

(Morning Star News) – A day before the Kaduna governor said kidnappers terrorizing the state are working with Boko Haram, Muslim Fulani herdsmen on Thursday (Oct. 3) kidnapped six teenage girls and two staff members from a Christian-run high school in north-central Nigeria, sources said.

Suspected to be herdsmen who have carried out numerous kidnappings and attacks in southern Kaduna state, the armed Fulani at 12:20 a.m. invaded Engravers’ College in Kakau Daji village, in Chikun County Local Government Area near Kaduna city, as students and staff members fled into the bushes, the sources said. The eight victims were taken away at gunpoint.

Kaduna Gov. Nasir el-Rufai told media on Friday (Oct. 4) that “bandits,” the term used by officials and Nigerian media wary of connecting the kidnappings to their fellow tribal Fulani, are working alongside elements of Islamic extremist group Boko Haram.

“We have been receiving intelligence some three months ago that the bandits have connected with some elements of Boko Haram, and they will be targeting schools to kidnap children because they know that that is what makes the news,” El-Rufai said.

Shunom Giwa, vice principal of Engravers’ College, said that five armed herdsmen appeared at the door of his house and spoke with each other in the Fulani language.

“They asked me to lie down, and I did as instructed,” Giwa told Morning Star News by phone. “They then attempted to enter my bedroom and, fully aware that my wife and children were inside, I stood up to distract them, but they asked me to lie down again, which I did.”

A few minutes later, he said, another set of the armed Fulani herdsmen appeared at his house with Joel Adamu, the school’s vice principal academics, and they ordered his colleague to lie on the floor beside him.

“When I discovered that their attention was on my colleague, I just ran into the bush, and on realizing I was escaping, they shot at me, but fortunately they didn’t get me,” Giwa told Morning Star News. “They searched for me without success, and when they couldn’t get me, they started looking for where the students were.”

As the assailants went to the school hostel and forced the door open, Giwa tried to distract them by shouting, “Police, JTF [Joint Task Force] security come, there are kidnappers here!” he said. “On hearing me shouting, they began to shoot at to my direction again. I then ran and jumped over the fence and ran out of the school.”

He remained hiding behind the fence until the sound of barking dogs signaled to him that the assailants must be leaving, he said. He headed toward a school official’s house where female students had gathered after hearing gunshots.

“When we recovered from the shock of what was happening, we started doing a head count to know which students were missing,” Giwa said. “We found that Joel Adamu, the vice principal of academics, the house mistress and six female students were abducted.”

The school, which is open to both Christian and non-Christian students, has a secular curriculum in accordance with Nigeria’s Ministry of Education but includes a Christian perspective, and students take Christian Religious Knowledge as a subject, an official told Morning Star News.

The school has a student population of 100, with rampant insecurity in the state compelling some parents to withdraw their children from the school, Giwa said.

The kidnappers have contacted school officials with their demands for ransom, he said. Initially they demanded 30 million naira (US$82,327) per student before negotiating lower, according to local reports.

“We are trusting God for the protection of the captives and hoping they would be released without being hurt,” Giwa said.

The 15-year-old daughter of Julde Juli was among the abducted students.

“I was shocked on receiving the news of the kidnapping of my daughter and other students,” he told Morning Star News. “I just pray that nothing happens to them, and that they come out alive. I trust that our God is sovereign over all things. We are trusting that through divine intervention our children would be rescued.”

The high school has suspended classes, school Director Samuel Amamchukwu told Morning Star News in a text message.

“We can’t continue with academic activities while the six students and two staff are in captivity,” he said.

Remaining students have returned to their parents, he said.

The village lies in the kidnapping belt of the state and is on the route to Kwanti village, where Morning Star News last year reported the displacement of many Christians due to kidnappings by armed Fulani Herdsmen, according to area residents.

Kaduna State Police Command spokesman Yakubu Sabo said authorities are making efforts to rescue the captives.

“The Command immediately mobilized combined teams of anti-kidnapping, SARS, and conventional police to the area for possible rescue of the victims and arresting the perpetrators of the unfortunate incident,” he said.

Kaduna state Commissioner for Information, Internal Security and Home Affairs Samuel Aruwan said in a statement on Friday (Oct. 4) that Gov. El-Rufai has dispatched a government delegation to sympathize with the school community and assure them that security agencies are working to rescue those abducted.

Boko Haram Executes Two Christian Aid Workers in Nigeria

Screen capture from Islamic State’s Amaq news site of Christian aid workers Godfrey Ali Shikagham (left) and Lawrence Duna Dacighir before their execution by Boko Haram. (Morning Star News)

(Morning Star News) – Islamic extremist group Boko Haram released a video last week showing the execution of two Christian aid workers in Nigeria, sources said.

Lawrence Duna Dacighir and Godfrey Ali Shikagham, both members of the Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN) in Plateau state, are shown kneeling while three masked, armed men stand behind them in a video posted Sept. 22 on Boko Haram’s Amaq news agency site. The two young men, who had gone to Maiduguri to help build shelters for people displaced by Islamic extremist violence, are then shot from behind.

Speaking in the Hausa language, the middle one of the three terrorists says in the video that they have vowed to kill every Christian they capture in revenge for Muslims killed in past religious conflicts in Nigeria. Dacighir and Shikagham, originally from Plateau state’s Mangu County, were captured by Boko Haram, now called the Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP), as they carried out their work in displaced persons camps.

Ethnic and religious tensions resulted in large-scale clashes between Muslims and Christians in Jos in 2001 and 2008.

It is not clear from the video, temporarily posted on YouTube, when the two men were executed. Their identities were confirmed by a relative, the Rev. John Pofi, a COCIN pastor.

Pastor Pofi, a cousin of the two executed Christians, told Morning Star News in a text message statement also shared with others that the two Plateau state natives had gone to Maiduguri from Abuja.

“Lawrence and Godfrey left Abuja for Maiduguri in search of opportunities to utilize their skills for the betterment of humanity and paid with their lives,” Pofi said. “We will never get their corpses to bury. The community will have to make do with a makeshift memorial to these young lives cut short so horrifically.”

If the federal government had created economic opportunities for those tempted to join extremist groups and had returned security to the country, his cousins would not be dead now, Pastor Pofi said.

“We must ask ourselves if this is the kind of country we want where young men who are earning an honest living are brutally killed while those who abduct and kill others are invited to dialogue with government and paid handsomely,” he said.

In a letter last week to the United Nations secretary general, attorney Emmanuel Ogebe of the U.S.-Nigeria Law Group, a legal consulting firm with an emphasis on human rights, expressed concern that the Nigerian government did not condemn the killing of the two men even though they were helping to provide shelter for displaced Nigerians.

“Lawrence and Godfrey …were using their skills to provide a basic human need of shelter to others when they were killed,” Ogebe stated. “Your excellency, we wish to draw your urgent attention to the fact that taken together with the execution of aid worker Hauwa  Liman (ICRC) this time last year, the recorded number of aid workers slaughtered by terrorists in Nigeria over the past decade is now in excess of 40.”

Ogebe asserted in his letter that the killing of the two Christians was Boko Haram’s first execution on the basis of “ethnic cleansing.” The two victims were from the predominantly Christian Mwalghavul ethnic group. Previous ethnic/religious clashes took place between the predominantly Muslim Hausa and Fulanis against the predominantly Christian Berom, Irigwe, Afizere, Tarok, Ngas and Mwalghavul peoples.

Ogebe wrote that workers for international aid group Action Against Hunger kidnapped in July issued a distressed plea for government help with no notable administration response. On Wednesday (Sept. 25), Action Against Hunger announced that one of its workers being held hostage had been executed.

“More executions of humanitarian workers could yet occur,” Ogebe wrote to the U.N. “Despite these humanitarian organizations’ resilience in still serving victims, the Nigerian Government has since just last week suspended Action Against Hunger and Mercy Corp on dubious grounds.”

International aid agency Mercy Corps suspended operations in Borno and Yobe states in northeast Nigeria after the Nigerian army closed four of its offices in the region without explanation, the agency announced on Wednesday (Sept. 25).

Ogebe urged the U.N. secretary general to obtain an assurance from Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari that all hostages will be released before the country’s Independence Day on Tuesday (Oct. 1).

“We also ask that you implore him to lift the suspension on humanitarian groups providing urgent services to victims,” Ogebe wrote. “We urge the secretary general to remind President Buhari of Nigeria’s obligations under international humanitarian law to negotiate the protection of aid workers and non-combatant civilians in its dialogue with BH/ISWAP [Boko Haram/Islamic State in Western Africa Province].

Nigeria ranked 12th on Open Doors’ 2019 World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most persecution.

Ransom Paid, but Kidnapped Pastor’s Wife Is Killed in North-Central Nigeria

Modified Photo: Domenico-de-ga at German Wikipedia

Nigeria (Morning Star News) – Fulani herdsmen this month kidnapped and killed a pastor’s wife in north-central Nigeria’s Kaduna state three days after suspected herdsmen killed a Baptist pastor in another part of the state, sources said.

Unaware that Esther Ishaku Katung had been killed after being kidnapped in Bagoma, 122 kilometers (75 miles) west of Kaduna City on Sept. 14, her family paid a 250,000 naira (US$690) ransom before discovering her body, said the Rev. Joseph Hayab, chairman of the Kaduna state chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).

Esther Ishaku Katung—(Morning Star News courtesy of family

Her husband, the Rev. Ishaku Katung of the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) congregation in Bagoma, escaped but was wounded by gunfire when the herdsmen broke into their home on church premises at 11:30 p.m. as they slept, Pastor Hayab said.

“Information we got from some of the kidnapped victims who escaped from the herdsmen’s enclave shows that Esther Katung and two other victims had escaped from the herdsmen’s captivity, but she was recaptured by them,” Pastor Hayab told Morning Star News. “She attempted to escape with two others after they were kidnapped by the herdsmen; this infuriated the herdsmen, leading them to kill her. They broke her legs in order to prevent her from escaping and smashed her head too. This led to her death.”

The kidnappers dumped her corpse in the bush, he said.

“After they had killed her, they were still demanding the ransom without telling her family that they had killed her,” Pastor Hayab said. “It was only after the ransom was paid that it was found by her family that she had been killed by her abductors.”

Baptist Pastor Slain

In Jema’a County about 230 kilometers (142 miles) south of Kaduna City, suspected Muslim Fulani herdsmen shot a Baptist pastor dead on Sept. 11, sources said.

The Rev. Alhamdu Mangadus, pastor of Nasara Baptist Church in Asso, was killed while working on his farm at about 1 p.m., said the Rev. Danladi Boyis Hassan of the ECWA church in the Ungwan Kadara area of Kaduna City.

Given the high level of killings and kidnappings by Muslim Fulani herdsmen in southern Kaduna in recent years, Christian leaders suspect herdsmen killed the pastor. Pastor Hassan, a native of the slain pastor’s village, visited the area after the killing and was told that the assailants were Muslim Fulani herdsmen.

“Pray along with the church and family as they mourn the barbaric act by Fulani terrorists,” Pastor Hassan told Morning Star News.

Pastor Hayab of the CAN also said Fulani herdsmen were behind the killing.

“He was shot dead on his farm, and the attackers injured another fellow from Tanda,” he said. “The corpse of the pastor was taken away by the Fulani herdsmen but was eventually recovered in the bush after a frantic search by our brethren in the area.”

Pastor Hayab said the killing of the pastor was one too many for Christians in violence-wracked Kaduna state.

“We are going back to the era of senseless killings. When will people be safe to go out and seek food to feed their families?” he said.

Nigeria ranked 12th on Open Doors’ 2019 World Watch List of countries where Christians suffer the most persecution.

Please keep these suffering brothers an sisters in your prayers.

%d bloggers like this: