Ugandan pastor killed by Muslim extremists after radio broadcast

Originally published in CBN News

Islamic extremists in northern Uganda killed a Christian pastor after he compared Christianity and Islam in a radio broadcast on October 31. 

Morning Star News (MSN), a nonprofit persecution watchdog, reports David Omara, 64, the pastor of the Christian Church Center and a well-known radio preacher in the area, was beaten and strangled to death after he finished his program on a radio station in the town of Aduku. 

The pastor’s son Simon Okut told Morning Star that immediately after the broadcast, someone called his father and expressed his appreciation for his preaching. The caller asked the pastor to meet him, and he would bring some friends. 

“We left the radio station. As we arrived at the said place, there came out of the bush six people dressed in Islamic attire, and they started strangling and beating my father with blunt objects,” Okut said. 

As they beat him, one of the assailants said, “This man ought to die for using the Koran and saying Allah is not God but an evil god collaborating with satanic powers,” the pastor’s son said. “As they were hitting my father with blunt objects and strangling him, I fled to save my life. Two attackers ran after me but could not get hold of me.”

Area residents were shocked by the pastor’s murder. Members of Omara’s church were afraid of further violence but were able to conduct his funeral and burial on Nov. 4 without incident. 

After burying her husband, Omara’s wife fainted and was taken to a local hospital, where she was treated for shock, Okut said. 

Other pastors praised the work of Pastor Omara’s ministry, saying that it bore much fruit for the kingdom. 

“He worked tirelessly for the kingdom of God to the day he breathed his last breath,” one colleague said. 

Omara is survived by his wife, and eight children ranging in age from 30 to 10 years old. 

“We need prayers and financial support for the Omara family at this trying moment, and the quick recovery for his widow,” a church leader told Morning Star.

Omara’s murder was the latest of many instances of persecution of Christians reported in Uganda.

As CBN News reported in September, a 13-year-old Christian girl and her 11-year-old brother were reportedly abducted by a radical Muslim woman two years ago and sold to a witchdoctor for ritual sacrifice. Hundreds of Ugandan children have been kidnapped and murdered or mutilated as part of a thriving human sacrifice business in that country.

In 2017, CBN News Sr International Correspondent George Thomas joined undercover detectives, armed police, and a pastor hunting for a witch doctor accused of kidnapping and killing children.

Child sacrifice in Uganda is such a serious and widespread problem that the government has even set up an anti-child sacrifice and human trafficking task force.

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.

In 2018, Uganda was not named in the annual Open Doors World Watch List of the top 50 countries where it is most dangerous and difficult to be a Christian. But it did make the list of the next eight countries where persecution is “high,” according to World Watch Monitor Uganda ranked at No 58.  

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