Detectives from the Department of State Security Services, DSS, in Nigeria have allegedly arrested a university student in Nasarawa state, Nigeria for converting from Islam to Christianity. They also arrested the man who had taken her to a local church.
Per Second News gathered that DSS agents arrested Nabila Umar Sanda, a 19-year-old student at Bingham University, from the house of a church leader, Jeremiah Datim, and also held her 33-year-old Christian friend, Simput Dafup, who had introduced Nabila to Datim.
According to Datim, stern looking officers “stormed my house, assaulted my wife, daughter and 8-month-old baby, and took Nabila away.”
“Miss Nabila told me she is 19 years old and therefore free to choose a religion for herself,” Datim said. “After I met Miss Nabila for the first time … I interacted with her and asked her a lot of questions about both the Christian faith and Islamic faith. Nabila clearly said that she had made up her mind to join the Christian faith and was willing to be a Christian no matter what obstacles were placed on her way.”
Dafup was arrested later at his home in Plateau state and still in DSS custody, relatives say.
Simut Dafup’s mother, Lydia, recalled, “The men who stormed my son’s premises, heavily armed, in five Hilux vehicles, blocked everywhere and assaulted even passers-by.”
“It has become so worrisome for me to let you know about this, because, as I speak with you now, I don’t know where my son is. Nobody has contacted me or any member of the family as to his whereabouts, she told World Watch Monitor, a unit base of the US based Open Doors USA.
Further checks revealed that Pastor Simput Eagles Dafup was taken away on Monday, 8th January 2018, by DSS men, for alleged preaching and converting Miss Nabila Umar Sanda Galadima.
Ms Nabila is from the Royal Galadima Biu Emirate Council in Borno State.
The university attended by Nabila Umar Sanda is owned by the Evangelical Church Winning All.
“In Nigeria, which is No. 14 on the World Watch List, there was a 14-year-old girl who was walking to school — the picture of innocence.’ “As she walked to school, she was kidnapped and taken from her family by a Muslim extremist living in the northern tribal region. She was forced into marriage, revealed Open Doors USA CEO David Curry.
Curry said that after the child was taken from her family, the extremist kidnapper agreed to sell the girl.
“A deal was cut with the tribal leader under Sharia law to sell this 14-year-old girl, Habiba, for $160,” Curry explained.
Open Doors USA is a United States based NGO that empowers and equip Christians worldwide who are suffering for their beliefs.
Last December, Per Second News in a report, revealed the suffering of a Christian mother and three of her daughters facing various forms of abuse for their refusal to convert to Islam and follow in the footsteps of the father, who became a Muslim for a local ward chairman position.
The mother and oldest daughter were arrested in March 2017, but local Church leaders managed to bail them out.
Two of her other young daughters, aged six and 15, have also been harassed for their faith.
It is unknown who ordered for the arrest of the duo of Ms Nabila and Mr Dafup.
Per Second News has attempted to reach the DSS for comment, but those efforts have been unsuccessful.
The Nigerian constitution and other laws and policies protect religious freedom and, in practice, the government must enforce these protections, although some local political actors stoked communal and sectarian violence with impunity.
” The controversy trailing the alleged conversion of a Muslim girl to Christianity, if not handled maturely, could result in a different thing between Christians and Muslims in the country, said Executive Director, Voice of Northern Christian Movement, Pastor Kallamu Musa Ali Dikwa.
Documents cited Friday in Washington by Per Second News revealed that in 2017, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, USCIRF, said that Nigeria merits designation as a “country of particular concern,” or CPC, under the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA), as it has found since 2009. A report also said that the Buhari administration has the capacity to improve religious freedom conditions by more fully and effectively addressing religious freedom concerns, and will only realize respect for human rights, security, stability, and economic prosperity if it does so.
USCIRF is an independent, bipartisan U.S. federal government commission created by the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) that monitors the universal right to freedom of religion or belief abroad.