04/03/2020 Washington D.C. (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that on Tuesday evening, March 31, despite serious concerns and restrictive measures to stall the COVID-19 pandemic, Fulani militants continued to move freely and attacked two Christian villages in Miango District, Nigeria. This is the eighth time in the last three years that Ancha village has suffered at the hands of these militants.
Narrating the heartbreaking incident, Ishaya, a member of the village’s Baptist church, said, “They came at about 11:00 p.m. (on March 31), firing gunshots and burning houses! It was so dreadful! They killed three persons and also burnt four cars (in Ancha).” Ishaya further disclosed that the militants proceeded to launch an attack on Hukke, the neighboring village, on Wednesday, April 1. During this attack, seven people were killed and approximately 30 homes were burned down over a span of two days.
“We are in great distress here,” Ishaya lamented. Those killed in Ancha village were a pregnant member of the Baptist church named Tina Musa (33), another member of the Baptist church, Gado Bhata (57), and a member of the Methodist church, William Rivi (65).
An injured victim of the Ancha village attack, Danlami Gado, who was admitted to Bingham University Teaching Hospital in Jos, recalled, “I was in the house. When we heard gunshots, we came out, not knowing that the attackers were already in the village. They fired shots at me and three bullets hit me on my left leg, shattering the bones. After they disappeared, I kept yelling out for help. Some persons eventually heard and came. They picked me up on a motorbike, riding through the bush until we got to a hospital in Miango.” Danlami’s injury was complicated, so he was referred to a hospital with the appropriate specialists. He has been scheduled for immediate surgery.
A local pastor, Yakubu Kpasa of ECWA Church, grieved over the murder of three of his church members, “They came on Wednesday, April 1, at about 8:00 p.m., and returned the next day, April 2, at about 5:00 p.m. They killed three by gunshots and destroyed our church building. They also burnt several houses.” Pastor Yakubu said the gunmen came in large numbers. The entire village has been deserted and he and his family are taking refuge in another village.
In a 2017 attack on Ancha village, the militants killed 20 people, all but one of whom were members of the Baptist church. During an attack on nearby Nkiedonwro village, 28 people ran to hide in a primary school classroom while military personnel engaged the attackers. The villagers were then killed by the militants when the military was overpowered.
Nathan Johnson, ICC’s Regional Manager for Africa said, “I have
personally prayed with this village over the mass grave of the 20 killed
in 2017. To see attacks continuing almost three years later in the same
village is infuriating. The government’s complete incompetency is
causing many Christians to lose their lives needlessly. It is time that
this administration begins to take the deaths of thousands seriously and
stop claiming that there are no issues. They are now responsible for
every death that takes place in Ancha village.”
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