07/11/2021 Nigeria (International Christian Concern) – According to Vanguard News, Father Elijah Juma Wada of Maiduguri, the capital city of Borno State in north-eastern Nigeria, has been freed from Boko Haram captivity.
“The news of the freedom of our brother is true. We thank God for his life. We are grateful to God for the cheering news,” a source told Vanguard News.
Father Wada reportedly left Shani Local Government Area on June 28th. The car that he was driving was later found along the roadside, empty with bullet holes littered throughout.
It is not yet clear how the priest regained his freedom. While some allege the Diocese paid the ransom for his release, others report that Father Wada escaped his abductors along with several other captives.
An official of the church told Vanguard that “the Bishop will soon communicate with the press on the matter at an appropriate time”.
Jihadist attacks in West Africa have been on the rise since the beginning of this year, with Nigeria being consistently targeted more than any other country in the region. Terrorist groups such as Boko Haram, Fulani Militants, and ISWAP have killed tens of thousands of Christians and displaced millions in an attempt to discard western influence and impose strict Islamic Sharia law. Illia Djadi, Open Doors senior analyst on freedom of religion and belief in sub-Saharan Africa, stated: “In the northeast of Nigeria, Boko Haram spreads terror with its systematic raids on predominantly Christian communities with abductions, sexual violence, and roadblock killings… Christians have been specifically targeted and disproportionately been affected by this violence… The responses by the government are clearly not enough, since perpetrators of such violence are able to continue attacking Christians, and other Nigerians, with impunity.”
Please pray for the safe return of all who have been kidnapped and give thanks to the Lord for freeing Father Wada from captivity. Please pray for the end of Islamic extremism and that those who persecute the church would find freedom in Christ.