Nkiruka Nistoran | March 10, 2020
Upwards of 12,000 Christians have been killed under since President Muhammadu Buhari took office in Nigeria on May 29, 2015 while over 2,000 churches have been lost, a Special Report released yesterday, Sunday, March 8, 2020, said. The report, by the Int’l Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety), was “dedicated to victims of Islamic jihad in Nigeria”. Entitled, ‘Nigeria: A Killing Field Of Defenseless Christians: 350 Killed In Jan & Feb 2020’, says in detail:
Nigeria has fully become a killing field of defenseless Christians. Available statistics have shown that between 11,500 and 12,000 Christian deaths were recorded in the past 57 months or since June 2015 when the present central Government of Nigeria came on board. Out of this figure, Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen accounted for 7,400 Christian deaths, Boko Haram 4,000 and the ‘Highway Bandits’ 150-200.
While 100 percent of the victims of Jihadist Herdsmen attacks across Nigeria are Christians, the estimated 4,000 Christians killed by Boko Haram were part of the estimated 6,000 massacred by the sect since June 2015. Generally, many, if not most of the victims of Boko Haram/ISWAP attacks in Nigeria’s Northeast are Christians. On the part of ‘Bandits/Highway Kidnappers’ in Northern Nigeria, most of their rural victims are Muslims while many, if not most of their outlet or roadside victims are Christians traveling to Northern or Southern parts of the country using the Birnin-Gwari Federal Road, near Kaduna, etc.
Also, in the past two months or Jan and Feb 2020, no fewer than 350 Christian deaths have been recorded and between 100 and 150 Christian travelers abducted on highways. And out of the 350 Christian deaths, Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen accounted for no fewer than 250. Boko Haram and ‘Highway Bandits’ are responsible for the remaining 100 deaths. The Killings targeted at Christians in Nigeria have continued into the first week of March 2020 leading to hacking to death of over a dozen more.
Among the worst hit in the latest round of Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen attacks are Plateau State with 70-80 deaths, Kaduna 50 deaths, Kogi 30 deaths, Benue 15-20, Delta 16 and Taraba 10. Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen have also in the past two months of Jan and Feb 2020 carried out attacks in Nasarawa, Adamawa, Edo and other parts of the country, leading to death of dozens of Christians. The anti Christian attacks by Boko Haram since Jan 2020 have also intensified in Borno, Adamawa and Taraba States; claiming between 50 and 70 Christian lives and loss of churches and other buildings belonging to Christians, while those of “Highway Bandits/Kidnappers” included raiding and looting of Christian villages and ambushing of Christian travelers.