One year after recapturing and the subsequent rebuilding of Mubi and other neighbouring Adamawa towns invaded by Boko Haram terrorists in 2014, Christians living in the towns have cried out over marginalisation of their members and churches in the distribution of relief materials to those affected by the attack.
Following Greennews.ng’s investigation, it was gathered that during the Boko Haram invasion of some parts of Adamawa state in October 2014, Churches were worst-hit in the attack, as terrorists unleashed mass destruction on church buildings they found.
On Sunday, November 2nd, 2014, 5 days after the invasion, Boko Haram terrorists who apparently thought Christians would return to worship, blew up Churches and set many ablaze. Information obtained from Christian authorities indicated that a total of 143 Churches were eventually razed in the territories controlled by Boko Haram. Churches damaged included both old Pentecostal churches and new generation churches.
From Hong to Mubi, burnt church buildings were still visible one year after the invasion; they were yet to be rebuilt. Some were completely razed and could only be recognized with their signages. Most of the churches have been fairly deserted by their members. Some, however, hold their weekly services in temporary structures within and around the burnt buildings.
Christian leaders who spoke with Greennews.ng on the condition of anonymity said relief materials didn’t get to Christians, noting that it was the reason many of the damaged churches were yet to be rebuilt. They revealed that the two churches who managed to rebuild, did so with support from their headquarters.
The leaders disclosed that the 2014 Boko Haram attack in Adamawa town was more of a religious war, as churches were the main targets of terrorists while Mosques were untouched; a claim some Muslims in Mubi town also confirmed.
However, they lamented that despite being the most affected in the Boko Haram invasion, Christians were excluded from the relief materials donated to the communities by Government, companies, International organisations and philanthropists.
According to the Christians leaders, after residents returned in January 2015 to rebuild their ravaged towns, Zinc materials were donated to the towns through the community leaders but Christian never got any share of the materials. They alleged that the relief materials, among others, were shared among the Muslim leaders and their cronies.
Based on expected standard of sharing relief materials to the affected people, the material went through political and community leaders who were mostly Muslims, this was believed to have caused the alleged exclusion of Christians from the gains. Even though, Muslims were not affected as much as Christians
One of the leaders, queried Government and philanthropic organizations’ mode of distributing the materials, the leader stressed that the relief materials were hijacked while suggesting that Government should have come to rebuild the damages including churches, then hand them over to their owners after completion.
During Greennews.ng’s visit to some Adamawa towns hit by Boko Haram, at least 30 Churches burnt by terrorists were observed between Gombi and Mubi town, over 40 were also seen in Mubi north and south LGAs. The destructions looked fresh one year after the bloody terrorists invasion.
Another Christian leader called on the federal government to revisit the situation, lamenting that Christian communities were still suffering from the invasion. Describing their treatment as ‘unfair’, the Cleric called on Government to come to their aid by using other means to distribute relief materials in the stead of relying on political and community leaders’ report.
The Christian leaders appealed to the government and other prospective donors to ensure issue of marginalisation was addressed in the distribution of materials to victims of Boko Haram attack.