From Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha
A human rights organisation, International Society for Civil Liberties & Rule of Law (Intersociety) has said that 1,470 Christians have been killed while 2,200 others were abducted by suspected Boko Haram, bandits and herdsmen in Nigeria.
The groups alleged that Nigeria has devastatingly remained the ‘most Christian killed country’ and ‘most dangerous place to be a Christian’ as well as Africa’s newest hotbed of Islamic Jihad and religious intolerance.
The Chairman of Intersociety Mr. Emeka Umeagbalasi who disclosed this in a statement said that the country had in the past four months or from January to April 2021 lost no fewer than 1,470 Christians out of estimated 3200 defenseless Nigerians abducted by jihadists during the period, Nigerian Christians accounted for no fewer than 2,200.
He said that 1,470 Christian deaths in four months was the highest number recorded since 2014 and it specifically surpassed the total number of Christians killed in the whole of 2019, estimated by the Open Doors to be 1,350.
According to him, ‘Kaduna recording the highest number of 300 Christian deaths out of estimated total of 430 killings, followed by Benue with 200 Christian deaths, Plateau 90 Christian deaths, Igbo Land States of Ebonyi, Enugu and Anambra, etc 80 Christian deaths, Christian part of Niger States (i.e. Shiroro, Munya and Rafi, etc) 70 deaths, Taraba/Adamawa 65 deaths, Ogun/Ondo 52 Christian deaths, Kebbi 50 Christian deaths (out of over 60 killed), Borno 50 Christian deaths (out of over 110 killed), Nasarawa 30 Christian deaths, Igbo part of Delta 20 Christian deaths.
Others include ‘Edo 20 Christian deaths, non Igbo part of Delta 10 Christian deaths, Oyo/Ekiti/Osun 30 Christian deaths, Gombe 20 Christian deaths, Christian part of Geidam in Yobe State 15 deaths (out of total killings) and Kogi State 10 Christian deaths. Nine Igbo Christians were also killed in Kibiya District of Kano State. There are also likely dozens of other Christian deaths, numbering over 30 not recorded.
‘The Northern Muslim controlled Nigerian Army also accounted for killing of at least 120 defenseless Christians from Benue, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Imo, Abia and Ebonyi.
‘The killings, raping, maiming and abductions by Fulani Herdsmen in Igbo States of the Southeast are being covered by Southeast Governors. In Anambra State, at least twenty Christians have been hacked to death by the Jihadists and scores abducted since Jan 2021 and yet little or nothing was said or done by the Government of Anambra State.
‘In Ebonyi State, not less than fifty Christian lives were lost to Fulani Jihadists between March and April 2021. In the killings that swept Mgbo and others in Ohaukwu LGA back in April, at least seventeen Igbo Christians were butchered and the State Government falsely blamed it on “inter-communal” clash but later admitted that they were perpetrated by Fulani Herdsmen “hired by the People of Agila in Benue State”.
‘In Ishielu Local Government Area of Ebonyi State and its neighboring Eha-Amufu in Enugu State, not less than 30 Igbo Christians were massacred by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen in late March 2021 and among them were seven persons from Eha-Amufu and 23 others from the affected communities in Ishielu.
‘Nine Igbo Christians were also hacked to death in Kibiya District of Kano State; totaling at least 89 Igbo Christian lives lost in first four months of 2021,’ Umeagbalasi stated.