Christian convert beaten, strangled by Muslim intruders: 'I refused to renounce Jesus as the Son of God'

. | Reuters/Joe Penney

NAIROBI, Kenya — A former Islamic teacher remains hospitalized after Muslim extremists in eastern Uganda beat him unconscious for converting to Christianity, sources said.

Shaquru Ndifuna, 33, was receiving treatment for blood loss at a medical clinic in Iganga town in the district of the same name, area Christians said.

A former Islamic teacher at Noor Islamic Institute in Mayuge District, Ndifuna is a resident of Kaliro Town Council, about 25 miles (40 kilometers) from Iganga town. He put his faith in Christ in January at an open-air evangelistic event in Namutumba, 39 kilometers from Iganga town.

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Word of his conversion spread, a cleric at the Noor Islamic Mosque began monitoring his movements, and in April three Islamic leaders visited him at his home, said an area Christian unnamed for security reasons.

“They questioned me about my absence as a teacher at Noor Mosque,” Ndifuna told Morning Star News. “I tried to explain to them about my other commitments elsewhere. One of them mentioned about me having become a Christian, but I did not respond. Afterwards the three Muslim leaders left.”

At 7:30 p.m. on May 2, four Muslims intruded into his house, he said.

“They forcefully entered into the house, shouting about me having blasphemed the Islamic religion and trying to force me to confess that Jesus is not the Son of God, and that Allah is the only God to be worshiped and Muhammad is His prophet,” Ndifuna said. “I refused to renounce Jesus as the Son of God. They started beating me up.”

His wife and three children hid in a bedroom, and his wife telephoned a family friend, saying that the assailants were beating him unconscious and that he had lost a lot of blood, the source said.

“The attackers have left, I think they thought my husband is dead — they did not touch his phone nor any property,” his wife told the friend, according to the source.

The friend drove to their home, took Ndifuna to a nearby medicine shop for first aid and later transferred him to the clinic in Iganga, the source said.

“Please take care of my children, I am not sure whether I will survive,” Ndifuna told Morning Star News at the hospital. “The Muslims who injured me were trying to force me to return to Islam, but I refused.”

Ndifuna suffered a deep cut on the right side of the forehead, a fracture in his right hand and a neck injury as the assailants tried to strangle him, the source said. His vision has been affected, and he has difficulty breathing.

“He can’t swallow solid food,” the source said. “He is using a drip of intravenous fluids with a little juice for his survival.”

The attack was the latest of many instances of persecution of Christians in Uganda that Morning Star News has documented.

Uganda’s constitution and other laws provide for religious freedom, including the right to propagate one’s faith and convert from one faith to another. Muslims make up no more than 12% of Uganda’s population, with high concentrations in eastern areas of the country. 

Morning Star News is the only independent news service focusing exclusively on the persecution of Christians. The nonprofit's mission is to provide complete, reliable, even-handed news in order to empower those in the free world to help persecuted Christians, and to encourage persecuted Christians by informing them that they are not alone in their suffering.

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