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Actress Shaffy Bello praises Imam Abubakar Abdullahi

Published by The Nation on Sat, 20 Jul 2019


Actress Shaffy Bello has showered praises on Imam Abubakar Abdullahi, for saving the lives of many Christians in Platea State.The actress on her Instagram account, pencilled down a tribute to the Imam on Thursday which witness Imam Abubakar Abdullahi receiving the first-ever International Religious Freedom Award of the United States Government with other four nationals.She wrote, I AM A CHRISTIAN. HE IS A HERO. Good morning fam.Today, the 83-year-old Nigerian Imam Abubakar Abdullahi will be among four other nationals (from Sudan, Brazil, Iraq and Cyprus) to receive the first-ever International Religious Freedom Award of the United States Government. He is the Imam of Nghar village who hid 262 Berom Christians in his mosque and in his house in June last year when herdsmen launched a bloody attack on 10 villages in Barkin Ladi, Plateau State. I believe that we need to amplify such uplifting stories of men and women who stand in defence of human life, in promotion of religious liberty and in advancing the cause of peace around the world. In a country such as Nigeria where religious difference has the potential of turning deadly, Imam Abubakar is a shining symbol of hope for a better future, where Muslims and Christians will see themselves first as human beings, as brothers and sisters created by the One God.Below is his profile on the award programme: Imam Abubakar Abdullahi selflessly risked his own life to save members of another religious community, who would have likely been killed without his intervention. On June 23, 2018, ethnic Fulani herdsmen, who are predominantly Muslim, launched coordinated attacks on 10 villages in Barkin Ladi, killing hundreds of ethnic Berom farmers, who are predominantly Christian.As Imam Abdullahi was finishing midday prayers, he and his congregation heard gunshots and went outside to see members of the towns Christian community fleeing. Instinctively, the Imam ushered 262 Christians into the mosque and his home next to the mosque. The Imam then went outside to confront the gunmen and he refused to allow them to enter, pleading with them to spare the Christians inside, even offering to sacrifice his life for theirs. Although the gunmen killed 84 people in Nghar village that day, Imam Abdullahis actions saved the lives of hundreds more. Born in Bauchi State around 1936, the Imam has lived in Nghar for 60 years and led the Muslim community through the mosque, which was built on land provided by the Christian community.
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