Imam who saved 262 Christians in a mosque gets a national award

An 86-year-old Islamic cleric, Imam Abdullahi Abubakar, who risked his life to hide 262 Christians in a mosque during a clash in Yelwa Gindi Village, will receive a National Honour this week from President Muhammadu Buhari. 

Abubakar, an Islamic cleric in Plateau state, is one of the 437 persons nominated by the federal government to receive national honours.

Abubakar has been nominated to receive the member award of the order of the Niger (MON).

President Muhammadu Buhari will present the awards on October 11 at the state house in Abuja.

NewsWireNGR recalls that Abubakar was said to have hidden 262 Christians in his mosque when suspected bandits attacked 10 communities in the Barkin Ladi LGA of the state in June 2018.

Also on the list of nominees is Muktar Gulma, a teacher who was said to have insisted on sticking with his students during an attack on the Federal Government College (FGC) in Birnin Yauri, Kebbi state.

He was said to have been eventually released alongside some of the students.

Gulma is on the list of nominees for the award of the member of the order of the Niger (MON).

This is not the first time Imam Abubakar has been acknowledged for his heroic and brave act; on July 17, 2019, the U.S. Department of State presented an annual award for courageous acts upholding religious freedom anywhere in the world.

Notably, one of the five people honoured with the International Religious Freedom Award is Imam Abubakar Abdullahi, the Muslim religious leader who selflessly risked his own life to save Christians who would have likely been killed without his intervention.

Four religious leaders from Sudan, Iraq, Brazil, and Cyprus, along with Abdullahi, were also awarded the 2019 International Religious Freedom Award. As the name suggests, the award is given to religious freedom advocates.

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