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Bodies of two Nigerian Christians murdered by militants dumped together on roadside


17 February 2020

The bodies of two kidnapped Christians, seminary student Nnadi Michael and Bola Ataga, wife of a local doctor, were found dumped at the same location in Kaduna State, Nigeria, on 31 January.

Nnadi Michael (18), was abducted from a seminary residence in Kakua on 8 January, along with Piusm Kanwai (19), Stephen Amos (23), and Peter Umenukor (23). The militants also looted valuables from the building.

Caption
Nnadi Michael was murdered by his kidnappers and found dead along the Kaduna-Abuja roadside

The seminary confirmed, in a statement released on 31 January, that three of the students had been released but Nnadi Michael had been found dead.

In a separate incident, Bola Ataga was kidnapped at the family residence along with her two children, on 24 January. A Barnabas contact confirmed that her bullet-ridden body was found, alongside Nnadi’s, dumped at a roadside near the Kaduna-Abuja highway.

Bola’s two children were released alive on 6 February.

Caption
Mrs Bola Ataga was kidnapped on 24 January, with her two children, and was found dead along the Kaduna-Abuja roadside [Image: Linda Ikeji]

The Kaduna-Abuja highway is notorious for abductions, predominantly by armed Fulani herdsmen, who also frequently attack Christian farming communities in Kaduna and Plateau States.

Local church leader Alfred Adewale Martin, condemned the murder of Nnadi, as “yet another indication of the failure” of the government to tackle the serious security crisis in Nigeria. On Sunday 2 February, five million people took part in peaceful marches across Nigeria protesting against the murder of Pastor Lawan Andimi by Boko Haram, and the failure of the authorities to halt the rising wave of violent attacks against Christians by Islamist extremists.

From Barnabas Fund contacts