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Uganda: Elderly Christian Woman Beaten for Housing Converts from Islam

Christians make up around 85% of Uganda’s population (there is a tiny minority of around 35,000 Orthodox Christians in that nation). In Uganda, Christian persecution generally does not involve government and law enforcement action, such as what we see in many other countries. Instead, converts to Christianity and Christians who proselytize are often targeted and harassed. 

For previous coverage of Christian persecution in Uganda, see here.

“Elderly Christian Woman Beaten for Housing Converts from Islam,” Morning Star News, September 23, 2021:

NAIROBI, Kenya (Morning Star News) – An 83-year-old Christian woman in eastern Uganda continues to receive hospital treatment two weeks after Islamic extremists, one posing as a pastor, attacked her, sources said.

Harriet Namuganza had given refuge to two Christian young men, 18- and 22-year-old converts from Islam, at her four-bedroom home in Iganga, Iganga District when the older one received a phone call on Aug. 4 from someone who introduced himself as a pastor who assists persecuted Christians.

The convert, unnamed for security reasons, said the caller sent 30,000 shillings, the equivalent of about US$8.50, to his phone as part of the support.

“He called again informing of his plans to visit us,” he told Morning Star News.

On Sept. 8 at about 10 p.m., a person who said he was the pastor who had offered to help knocked on the door, the Christian said.

“When he mentioned that he was a pastor, we opened only to see several men outside,” the Christian said. “We rushed into one of the rooms and hid ourselves on top of the ceiling. The attackers could not find us and landed on our spiritual grandmother, saying, ‘Let us kill her.’ Another said she was too old.”

Namuganza pleaded with them to spare her, saying she was of advanced age, he said.

“One assailant started beating and kicking her as she screamed for help,” he told Morning Star News. “Another said, ‘Let us leave her – we’ll come back to look for the boys who mysteriously escaped.’”

After the attackers left, the two young men came down from the ceiling, he said….

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 percent of Uganda’s population, with high concentrations in eastern areas of the country.

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