Nigeria: Islamists attack Christian principal

Monday, December 16, 2013

By Joseph DeCaro, Worthy News Correspondent

ABUJA, NIGERIA (Worthy News)-- Educational reforms in Nigeria's Osun state have resulted in religious violence after Islamist youths beat a Christian principal unconscious last month, according to Morning Star News.

Principal Layi Oguntola only regained consciousness after being hospitalized.

On Nov. 25, Muslims armed with axes and swords attacked the staff and students at the Baptist High School-Ejigbo after its officials sent a female student home for violating the school's ban on the hijab, a covering used by Muslim women.

Christian leaders told Morning Star News that the attack was proof of Gov. Rauf Aregbesola's plan to force Islam on all the students in Osun's schools.

Back in September, the southwestern state had merged all its schools, requiring some Muslims to attend educational institutions founded by Christians. But the Nigerian Baptist Convention said they would not allow students wearing hijabs to attend classes in their former Christian schools.

After the attack, the Baptist High School and other local Christian schools were closed. Armed police were later sent to stop further violence after Islamists tried to set fire to the United Baptist Church.

While most Muslims in Nigeria live in the northern states, Osun has a large population of Muslims and Christians. In general, Christians comprise 51 percent of Nigeria's population and live mainly in the south, while Muslims account for 45 percent and live mostly in the north.