(Reading time: 2 - 3 minutes)

Fulani herdsmen have attacked Nigerian Christians with impunity. Photo - World Watch Monitor
Fulani herdsmen have attacked
Nigerian Christians with impunity.
Photo: World Watch Monitor

Several fatal attacks have taken place this March in Guma, Agatu, Naka, and several other local government areas (LGAs) of Benue state. The death toll between March 10th and March 20th had risen to 60, according to Nigeria's police chief, who says he's deploying a special tactical force to deal with the continuing violence.

The series of attacks began on March 10th in Mkgovur village, located on the outskirts of Buruku town. When a group of Hausa-Fulani herders were prevented from grazing their cattle on the farms of the indigenous Christian community, they returned armed with sophisticated weapons and proceeded to shoot and kill anyone in sight. By the time the villagers realized what was happening, about ten people had been killed and several others were missing. Surviving villagers had to flee to the neighbouring Gboko Local Government Area.

After the attack in Mkgovur, another attack was carried out a couple days later in the village of Tombo-Mbalagh, Buruku LGA. This attack was directed mostly against an unarmed Christian population going about its normal business. About eight people were killed and three others were reported missing. Before the intervention of security services, another attack was carried out by the militant herdsmen in the early hours of March 14th. This attack took place at Wanune, headquarters of Tarka LGA. While the government struggles to find a solution to the problem, the killing has continued.

Benue state is a Christian majority state, with limited settlements of Muslims within some urban centres of the different local government councils. However, it is fair to say that the attacks of the militants have been selective, targeting mostly Christian villages, communities and settlements.

Added Note: Attacks by Fulani herdsmen have also affected Christians in Nigeria's Kaduna state, despite calls for peace and an increased army presence. On the morning of February 20th, the militants began setting fire to the Christians' homes, demanding that they renounce their faith. The gunmen killed 15 people, mostly women and children, and injured more than 50 others. Please also pray for the Christians living in this village.

Ask the Lord to personally contend with those who seek to harm and annihilate His people, bringing upon the 'workers of iniquity' a healthy reverential fear of their Creator so that they may humbly turn to Him, repent of their evil ways, do justly, and live honourably before Him (Isaiah 49:25; Proverbs 9:10). Pray that He will be especially close to the many vulnerable and suffering Christians in Nigeria -- loving and comforting them, providing their villages needed protection, and redeeming all that the enemy has sought to kill, steal and destroy. May they find the precious rest and hope that comes from Christ alone.

Current Ministry Projects

VOMC works with in-country partners to encourage and strengthen persecuted Christians through a variety of methods. Christians are equipped with audio bibles to distribute to their persecutors. Christian widows receive skills training and trauma counselling as a way to provide an income for their families and heal from the trauma they’ve faced in losing their husbands. Children who have lost parents and relatives due to attacks are provided with a safe place to grow and be nurtured. Medical fees are paid for Christians who have suffered injuries due to attacks by Boko Haram and Fulani. Discipleship and vocational training are given to Muslim Background Believers to help them start their new lives spiritually and practically. The Glenn Penner Scholarship Award is used to help equip persecuted Christians completing their Masters and have a heart to share the Gospel with the lost in their community.

Project Funds: Women’s Ministry, Bibles, Medical Fund, Families of Martyrs, Equipping the Saints, Relief & Development

Country Information

Population
219,463,862 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity (%)
Hausa (30), Yoruba (15.5), Igbo (15.2), Fulani (6), Tiv (2.4), Kanuri/Beriberi (2.4), Ibibio (1.8), Izaw/Izon (1.8), Other (24.7)

Religion (%)
Islam (53.5), Christianity (45.9), Other (0.6)

Leader
President Muhammadu Buhari (2015)

Government type
Federal presidential republic

Legal system
Mixed legal system of English common law, Islamic law (in 12 northern states), and traditional law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Nigeria

May God minister great comfort and healing to all who have been injured or bereaved as a result of the militants' brutal attacks. In addition, pray for the remaining abducted Chibok schoolgirls, that they will be assured of the Lord's abiding presence as they await release from captivity. Continue to uphold President Buhari and other members of the Nigerian government as they make further attempts to rescue the remaining girls and provide protection for vulnerable citizens. As they persevere in their endeavours to overcome terrorism, may they be granted wisdom, courage, strength and help from on high.

end

Select a Region

Nigeria News

  • Multiple Attacks on Christian Villages
    Rubble of a home
    A burned home in Kagoro, Kaduna State.
    Photo: Gideon Agwom Mutum via Morning Star News

    The Nigerian state of Kaduna experienced multiple attacks on predominantly Christian villages between March 17th and March 24th. Due to the nature of these recent attacks, the exact number of victims is not yet cl

    ...
  • Leah Still in Captivity After Four Years
    Leah Sharibu
    Leah Sharibu

    February 19th marked the fourth anniversary of the abduction of Leah Sharibu, a Nigerian schoolgirl who was kidnapped by Boko Haram terrorists when she was only 14 years old. Originally, 110 students were captured during the raid. Five died following the attack and, after negotiations,

    ...