Nigeria: Christian woman raped and killed in church while studying

June 6, 2020

Christian persecution in Nigeria: Christians in Nigeria have been brutalized and killed with impunity for years now, with little or no significant response from the Nigerian government or military. It is clear that Nigerian authorities have little or no interest in securing law-abiding, defenseless Christians against these unrelenting massacres and ethnic cleansing.

The Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle, Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, once again urgently implores the United Nations and the governments of all nations that are committed to human rights and religious freedom to make the plight of Nigeria’s Christians a top priority. Those Christians are walking the way of the Cross. May our Lord, God and Savior Jesus Christ also bless them with the joy of a resurrection and new flourishing of their communities.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Christians in Nigeria from, see here.

“Christian woman killed, raped in Nigerian church while studying, family says,” by Samuel Smith, Christian Post, June 6, 2020:

A 22-year-old Nigerian Christian university student was raped and killed while she was in her church studying last Wednesday, family members have said. 

Uwaila Vera Omozuwa, a University of Benin microbiology student, died last Saturday, two days after she was attacked inside the Redeemed Christian Church of God in Benin city, the capital of the Edo state in southern Nigeria. 

Omozuwa, a member of the church’s choir, was found half-naked lying in a pool of blood by a security guard, family members told media outlets. 

“She wanted to be a minister and preach the word of God,” Omozuwa’s sister, Judith told CNN, explaining that the church was her favorite place to be. “That she was murdered where she always found peace is just devastating.”

Police have arrested one suspect believed to be connected to Omozuwa’s murder. Edo Police Command spokesperson Chidi Nwabuzor told Nigerian media that the suspect was detained after the fingerprints found on the fire extinguisher she was attacked with were analyzed. 

“The item used in the assault, which was a fire extinguisher, was recovered, immediately the operatives who were with some specialists screened the fingerprints which led to our suspect,” Nwabuzor was quoted as saying. “Around the place of the incident, the suspect was arrested.”…

While family members said medics told them Omozuwa was raped, CNN reports that authorities in Nigeria have not yet ruled the incident as rape but are instead describing it as an “inhumane sexual assault.”

“It shows how police are unwilling to even investigate rape cases and will rather probe murder allegations,” Ojigho said. “Both are heinous crimes and none should be dismissed for the other.”…

A recent estimate from the nongovernmental organization International Society for Civil Liberty & Rule of Law suggests that over 620 Christians have been killed in Nigeria so far in 2020 while thousands have been killed in recent years. 

Nigeria was added to the U.S. State Department’s “special watch list” of countries that engage in or tolerate severe violations of religious freedom for the first time last December and is ranked as the 12th-worst country in the world for Christian persecution by Open Doors USA.