(…Benue and Taraba highest with 463/450 Christian deaths, Kaduna 395, Niger 314, Plateau 312 and Borno 240)
(…400 abducted in Jan-Oct at Southeast’s Jihadists’ flashpoints of Umunneochi, Isi-Uzo, Isiukwuato and Igbo-Eze)
(4000 Christians Slaughtered And 2,315 Abducted Between Jan And Oct 2022)
The past ten months of 2022 or January to Oct had seen no fewer than 4020 defenseless Christians slaughtered in Nigeria by the country’s Islamic terror Jihadists with the most atrocious and barbarous being the Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and their regionally assembled allied Islamic terror groups which jointly accounted for 2,650 of the 4020 total Christian deaths. Other culpable Jihadist terror groups are ISWAP, Boko Haram and Ansaru accounting for 450 Christian deaths and the Jihadist Fulani (Zamfara) Bandits and their splinters responsible for 350 Christian deaths. The Nigerian Government friendly armed Jihadist groups particularly Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and Jihadist Fulani (Zamfara) Bandits had also during the period under review abducted not less than 2,315 defenseless Christians; with 1401 abducted between January and June 2022 and 915 abducted between July and Oct 2022. Out of the 2,315 abducted Christians, 10% or 231 have circumstantially been found to be incapable of returning alive to their families, having most likely been killed in captivity for their refusal to convert to Islam or inability to pay huge ransoms demanded. The 4020 Christian deaths in ten months further indicated 402 Christian deaths per month and 13 deaths per day. In the area of the 2,315 Christian abductions in ten months of 2022, it amounted to 231 Christian abductions per month and approximately eight abductions per day.
The International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety) had in January 2022 disclosed that ‘5,191 defenseless Christians were hacked to death in 2021 and 3,800 others abducted by Nigeria’s Islamic Jihadists’. Intersociety also stated in its Special Report of 14th July 2022 that in January to June 2022, a period of first six months of the year, ‘no fewer than 2,543 Christians were hacked to death and 1,401 others abducted; out of which, 10% or 140 captured Christians were not capable of returning alive’. Intersociety had further disclosed in the Report that ‘out of the 2,543 total Christian deaths, Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen accounted for 1,913. That is to say in the past four months of 2022 or July to Oct, additional 750 Christians were slaughtered by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen; bringing the total number of Christians killed in ten months of 2022 to 2,650. Our 2021 report also corroborated the Open Doors’ 2022 World Watch List (WWL) on global killing of Christians’ index, which disclosed that “4,650 Christians were killed in Nigeria between Nov 2020 and Oct 2021, higher than 3,530 deaths recorded in the previous year (Oct 2019-Nov 2020) and 2500 abducted as against 900 abducted in the previous year”. I
Security Forces Ethnically And Religiously Killed 550 Unarmed Easterners In Ten Months
Also involved in the massacre of defenseless Christians in the country since January to October 2022 are religiously radicalized and ethnically biased Nigerian security forces (Military, spy Police and various Police crack squads). The Nigerian security forces under reference are responsible for shooting and killing of not less than 550 defenseless and unarmed Trado-Judeo-Christian citizens of Old Eastern Nigeria especially defenseless members of the Igbo Ethnic Nationality; shot and killed and falsely, discriminatorily and hatefully labeled “IPOB members” or “parents or brothers or sisters or wives or in-laws or relatives or children of IPOB members”. Out of the 550 civilian deaths perpetrated by Nigeria’s security forces, 350 deaths were recorded between January and June 2022 and 200 others recorded in July to Oct 2022. The killings by Nigeria’s security forces within the period under review also involved wanton destruction of over 600 civilian homes and other nonviolent properties worth billions of naira or tens of millions of dollars. The 550 defenseless civilian lives and 600 homes and other properties were wantonly destroyed on the grounds of religion and ethnicity; which explains their addition in Intersociety’s list of persecuted Christians and their wantonly destroyed properties in Nigeria. The 550 deaths also arose from open and secret military and police killings. Open killings include targeted killing of unarmed and defenseless citizens at crime scenes or their vicinities and labeling them “ESN/IPOB/Unknown Gunmen killed during exchange of gunfire with security forces” as well as secret or custodial killing of unarmed citizens arrested alive and taken into custody or captivity where they are tortured to death or shot and killed in the hours of the blue law.
4020 Christian Deaths: Benue 463, Taraba 450, Kaduna 395, Niger 314, Plateau 312, Borno 240
The State by State distribution of the 3020 of the 4020 Christian deaths in the past ten months of 2022 or Jan to Oct had Benue and Taraba taking the lead as the worst hit States with 463 (from 192 in Jan-June) and 450 Christian deaths (from 250 Christian deaths in Jan-June 2022); followed by Kaduna with 395 Christian deaths (from 323 in June-June), Niger 314 (from 264 in Jan-June), Plateau 312 (from 229 in Jan-June) and Borno 240 (from 120 in Jan-June 2022). Other States affected in the investigative distribution of the 3020 of the 4020 Christian deaths are Ondo 152 (from 112 in Jan-June), Abia 85, Kebbi 85, Enugu 80, Ogun 60, Yobe 50, Delta 45, Nassarawa 40, Kogi 35, Edo 30, Bauchi 30, Ekiti/Oyo/Osun 75, FCT 30, Gombe 20, slain Pastoral Igbo-Christians in the North 20 in number and Anambra with 20 Christian deaths; totaling 3020 Christian deaths. In the 3020 Christian deaths distributed according to States, Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen accounted for 2,650 while terror Fulani Bandits accounted for the remaining 350 others. Pieces of evidence abound where Boko Haram, ISWAP, Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and terror Fulani Bandits jointly participate in the anti Christian butcheries-with examples being in Niger, Taraba and Birnin Gwari part of Kaduna State; Nassarawa, Kogi and FCT. Attacks and killings in Benue and Plateau States as well as Southeast and South-South are mostly carried out by Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and their foreign allies.
550 Eastern Christian Deaths By Military And Police According To States
Apart from the 3020 of the 4020 Christian deaths distributed according to States above, there are also remaining 1000 others, out of which 550 were perpetrated by the deployed military and police personnel in the Southeast and the South-South or Old Eastern Nigeria. The 231 of the remaining 1000 Christian deaths represent 10% of the 2,315 abducted Christians presumed to have died in captivity; having been abducted and disappeared without traces ten months after their abduction by terror Jihadists. The remaining 210 Christian deaths represent those killed outside Eastern Nigeria in deliberate military airstrikes and those killed at refugee camps in neighboring countries by Boko Haram or ISWAP as well as others representing “dark figures of crimes” or killings never traced or tracked by media or research or investigative institutions or Government institutions. The State by State breakdown of the 550 military and police generated Christian deaths indicate that Imo State recorded the highest number with at least 250 unarmed Christian deaths, followed by Anambra with no fewer than 120 unarmed Christian deaths, Abia at least 80 unarmed Christian deaths, Ebonyi 60 (including killings perpetrated by the Nigerian Army-allied Ebubeagu Government militias), Enugu 50 and Rivers 40 deaths. Pockets of such killings also took place in Cross River and Akwa Ibom States within the period under review.
Massive Jihadist Takeover Hit Taraba And Niger States: Christians On The Run
It has been investigated and found by Intersociety that Taraba State had come under ferocious, widespread and unchecked jihadist attacks since January 2022, resulting in the killing of no fewer than 450 Christians. Between Jan and July, over 300 Christians were slaughtered by the combined forces of ISWAP, terror Bandits and Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen who launched fiercest attacks in over 40 predominant Christian villages, killing hundreds and displacing over 120,000 others. This is to the extent that over 30 Christians were slaughtered between July 5 and 12 and between June and July 2022, over 60 Christians were slaughtered. The predominant Christian communities worst affected are those under Takum/Donga/Ussa/Yangtu Federal Constituency. This is according to Hon Rimamnde Shawulu Kwewum, a Member Representing the area in the House of Representatives. The Christian parts of Niger State including Shiroro, Munya and Rafi, Mariga and Lapai Local Government Areas have also come under widespread Jihadist attacks with forceful conversion to Islam being the order of the day. This is in addition to coordinated violence against Christian settlements, their farmlands and sacred places of worship. Moderate Muslims in Niger State are also not spared and are being targeted for Jihadist attack.
2,315 Abducted Christians: Kaduna State Worst Hit With Over 600 Abducted Christians
Kaduna State was investigated and found to be the worst hit with highest number of abducted Christians with not less than 600. According to the Southern Kaduna Peoples Union (SOKAPU), “over 100 Christians were abducted by terror Jihadist Fulani Bandits and Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and others in Sept 2022 alone”. The State also accounted for 300 abducted Christians in July-October 2022. Other affected States are Borno 200, Niger 150, Plateau 150, Abia (Umunneochi and Isiukwuato) 140, Enugu (Isi-Uzo, Uzo Uwani, Igbo Eze, etc) 100, Imo 80, Benue 60, Kebbi 50, Taraba, 50, Adamawa 40, Kogi 40, FCT 35, Anambra 20 and others 600; totaling 2,315 abducted Christians in the past ten months of 2022 or January to Oct.
Jihadists Abducted 400 In 10 Months At Umunneochi, Isi-Uzo, Okigwe, Isukwuato And Igbo-Eze
The four major flashpoints or dead zones for indigenous Igbo Christians especially travelers in the Southeast have been investigated and found to be Umunneochi and Isukwuato in Abia State, Okigwe in Imo State and Isi-Uzo and Igbo-Eze/Igbo-Etiti in Enugu State. These five Igbo communal areas are under siege by Nigerian security forces protected Jihadist Fulani Herdsmen and their regionally assembled allies. This is to the extent that more than 400 defenseless Igbo Christians were abducted in the past ten months of 2022. Also no fewer than 200 lives have been lost to the Jihadists in the areas within the period under review. The Ebubeagu Government militias camouflaged as “anti violent Herdsmen outfit” by the Gov of Ebonyi State as ‘Chairman of the Southeast Govs Forum” are nothing but “a complementing killer militia” aiding and escalating the atrocities of the Jihadists against members of the defenseless Igbo-Christian population.
Over 60 Ordained Christian Ministers Of God Abducted And 15 Killed In Captivity In Ten Months
No fewer than 60 abductions associated with ordained Christian Ministers of God have taken place in the past ten months of 2022. According to a data compiled by the Aid to the Church in Need Int’l (ACN), released on 11th July 2022, “Eighteen Catholic Priests have been abducted in Nigeria between January and first week of July 2022 and five of them abducted in the first week of July 2022 alone”. The number of abducted Catholic Priests has since risen to 26. On 15th July 2022, for instance, two more Catholic Priests (Reverend Fathers John Mark Cheitnum and Donatus Cleopas of Christ the King Catholic Church in Kafanchan, Kaduna State) were abducted and shortly thereafter on 19th July, Father Cheitnum was killed. On Friday, 12th August 2022, Reverend Father Chinedu Nwadike (Cssp) and a young Seminarian, Emmanuel Nwafor (Pre Prostulant) were abducted by Jihadist Fulani terrorists at Umunneochi, along same Enugu-Okigwe-Port-Harcourt Expressway. On Sunday, 21st August 2022, four Reverend Sisters (Johannes Nwodo, Christabel Echemazu, Liberata Mbamalu and Benita Agu) were abducted by Jihadists at Okigwe. The four Catholic Priests so far killed this year by the Islamic Jihadists are Reverend Fathers Bako, Borogo, Odia and Cheitnum. According to Morning Star News of 2nd August 2022, quoting officials of ECWA Church for All Nation in Nigeria, “six Pastors of the Church were killed by Islamic Jihadists between January and July 2022 alone and 27 of their members abducted”. Scores of other Christian Ministers of God have been killed by the Jihadists between January and Oct 2022.
For: International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law, Onitsha, Eastern Nigeria
International Principal Officers:
/s E. Umeagbalasi
Emeka Umeagbalasi, Criminologist/Researcher
Board Chair @ Intersociety
/s C. Umeche
Chinwe Umeche Esquire, LL.B, BL
Head, Democracy and Good Governance Program @Intersociety
Chidinma Udegbunam Esquire, LL.B, BL
Head, Campaign and Publicity Department @ Intersociety
Ndidiamaka Chinaza Bernard Esquire, LL.B, BL, LLM
Head, Int’l Justice and Human Rights Program @ Intersociety