Nigerian Pastor 'Butchered' to Death by Muslim Herdsmen; Remembered as Dedicated Servant to the Poor Who Educated Over 400 Kids for Free

Pastor Joshua Adah was murdered by Muslim Fulani extremists in the Taraba state of Nigeria on January 23, 2015.
Pastor Joshua Adah was murdered by Muslim Fulani extremists in the Taraba state of Nigeria on January 23, 2015. | (Screengrab: Facebook/Joshua Adah)

A popular Nigerian pastor, who is touted as a dedicated servant to the poor, was "butchered" to death last week on his way back from pastoral duties by Muslim Fulani herdsmen, whom some say could be linked to the terrorist group Boko Haram.

As Morning Star News reports, pastor Joshua Adah, who founded and operated a school that provides over 400 kids with free education in the village of Bantaje, fell victim to the wrath of Muslim extremists belonging to the Fulani ethnolinguistic group, the same herdsmen that also reportedly attacked Nigerian Christian communities last week.

According to unnamed supporters of Adah's ministry, Adah was on his way back to his mission station last Friday after attending an "evangelistic outreach" event when his car broke down and he had to pull over on the side of the road.

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After pulling over, Adah then called his mechanic who came to the scene to see if he could fix the car. When it was determined that the mechanic could not fix the car, the mechanic then left the scene to call a tow truck. After calling for assistance and returning to the scene, the mechanic could not find Adah. After conducting a long search, the mechanic was able to find Adah's slain body.

"A few kilometer from Jalingo, he had car issues along the Wukari-Jalingo road," the ministry supporter said. "He was mercilessly hacked to death by Fulani herdsmen and Boko Haram."

A local police spokesman, Joseph Kwaji, confirmed that Adah was killed by Fulani herdsmen.

"The pastor's car broke down at Chediya on his return from Koji. He then phoned his mechanic at Jalingo to help him fix the car. When the mechanic arrived, the two men agreed to hire a vehicle nearby Dan Anacha, which would tow the car to Jalingo," The police spokesman said. "The mechanic upon returning to scene could not find the pastor. … After a thorough search, his body was found in the area."

Although the police spokesman didn't provide details about the exact manner in which the herdsmen murdered Adah, his wife told Morning Star News that he was indeed "butchered."

One ministry supporter recounted Adah's sacrifices and his commitment to providing for the poor after being born again in 2000.

"Not too long after he got born again, he left the comfort and 'luxury' of city life for a remote village on a hill without light nor potable drinking water, not even a well in sight," the supporter explained. "He was there with his humble wife and kids to answer the call of God at this time when larger cities meant greener pastures, fatter offerings and sizeable tithes to others doing ministry. He continued to preach the Gospel and hold campaigns, not in the urban areas but mostly in rural areas.

"I don't know why God allowed Boko Haram to cut his life short. Even when it became dangerous, he refused to get out but kept preaching Christ in villages where many will not go," she added .

Adah became well known in the Taraba state as he was dedicated to providing food, shelter, money and medicine to the less fortunate villagers in the province.

"He shared his meager resources with the poor. He clothed them. He showed love to them. His home was theirs. I can't keep the tears away," the supporter said. "I'm still hoping to wake up and realize it has all been a bad dream. If only I can see and speak to my friend, my big brother just one more time. [He was] a rare gem. I remember all the times he prayed with me and encouraged me. I feel so shattered. I am crushed."

Although there's no clear evidence that Boko Haram was involved in Adah's murder, it was reported in 2014 that many Fulani herdsman have confessed membership to the Boko Haram.

In October, Muslim extremists stormed two Taraba churches, interrupting worship services, and killed 31 people.

Last March, Fulani herdsman in the Nigerian state of Kaduna burned down three Christian villages and hacked and burned to death over 100 people.

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