ICC Note: A prominent evangelist in Uganda was murdered on his way home from a faith based debate with local Muslim leaders in the village market, according to Morning Star News. Samson Nfunyeka, age 59, had been debating with local Muslims in the Tirinyi Trading Center four months ago when a former Sheikh turned Christian stated, “such debates were not good for the Muslims.” Samson scheduled another debate on September 22nd when certain portions of the discussion upset some of the Muslim attendees. Living in Kalampete village in the Kibuku District, he was forced to walk seven miles from the location of the debate. His mutilated body was found on the road the following day with signs of strangulation. Uganda is no stranger to Christian persecution as the wife of a former Sheikh was poisoned to death after she and her husband converted to Christianity among many other incidents of violence, rape, and murder.
10/16/2015 Nairobi, Kenya (Morning Star News) – Islamists upset by a Christian-Muslim debate are suspected in the killing of a long-time evangelist in eastern Uganda who led many Muslims to Christ, sources said.
The mutilated body of Samson Nfunyeku was found close to his home in Kalampete village, Kibuku District early on Sept. 23, after the latest in a series of organized debates with Islamic scholars at Tirinyi Trading Center ended prematurely due to flaring tempers the previous night. He was 59.
At a previous debate, also sponsored by Nfunyeku’s Church of Uganda and other churches, Muslim leaders had threatened him and warned him to hold no more debates, a source said.
“Four months ago Samson and others had a very hot debate at Tirinyi Trading Center with the Muslim scholars that ended on a bad note, and they gave warning that such debates were not good for the Muslims,” said one of the participants, a former sheikh (Islamic teacher) who became a Christian.
Nevertheless, another debate was held on Sept. 22 with few in attendance, said the source, whose name is withheld for security purposes. The debate ended at about 5:30 p.m., and as the trading center is about seven kilometers (four miles) from Kalampete, colleagues estimated Nfunyeku was killed between 7:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.
He had head injuries and a mark on his neck indicating he was strangled, they said.
Nfunyeku was a lay leader who boldly proclaimed Christ in house-to-house visits and at evangelistic events for more than 30 years. Loved ones showed strong emotion at his burial on Sept. 25 in Kalampete, sources said.
“We are going to miss the courage and passion seen in the life of Samson, who was out to win Muslims for Christ,” Gauma Samuel of the Church of Uganda’s Budaka Archdeaconry said at his funeral service.