A group of suspected Fulani Herdsmen have murdered a pastor and three members of his congregation - including a 10-year-old boy - in a vicious attack on a Christian community in Nigeria's Plateau State.
According to a report at Morning Star News, the herdsmen shot and killed 34-year-old Matthew Tagwai, the pastor of Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) congregation, in his home at around 8pm on 7th April. In addition, the militants executed congregation members Ishaku Abba, 10; Dih Sunday, 21; and Duh Abba, 38.
Local resident Patience Moses said:
“The attack was carried out by armed herdsmen against the community at about 8:20 p.m. on Tuesday, 7 April.
“Two other Christians, Abbayo Ki, 45, and Monday Adamas, 19, were also injured during the attack by the herdsmen, and they are currently being treated at a hospital at Dantako village.”
A survivor of the attack, Moses Gata, confirmed that the attackers were Fulani - a semi-nomadic group of cattle herders who have become increasingly violent towards the Christian community in recent years.
“There’s no doubt about it – our attackers are Muslim Fulani herdsmen,” Gata told Morning Star News. “They were communicating with themselves in Fulfulde, the herdsmen’s language.”
Another resident, Andy Yakubu, told Morning Star News that the herdsmen had committed several attacks over recent days.
"In the past one week, Fulani herdsmen have been attacking different villages,” Yakubu said. "What is the crime of these innocent people against Fulani herdsmen? For how long shall we continue to experience this killing? For how long shall we continue to beg the government and the security agencies to come to the aid of our people?"
Rev Yunusa Nmadu Jr., ECWA general secretary, added: “This new attack, like the ones before it, is condemnable.
“The continuing attacks on harmless and unsuspecting Christian communities without concrete, strategic response from our duty-bearers to protect our people leaves much to be desired.”