On January 25, a group of gunmen kidnapped David Onubedo, the pastor of Kogi state’s Deeper Life Bible
Church, following a Bible study. Pastor Onubedo’s captors also demanded 50 million naira as a ransom.
In addition to the recent kidnappings, a pastor was shot and wounded on January 24 as he was delivering a
sermon before his congregation in Bayelsa. This violence raises suspicions about the origin of the attackers
because Kogi state and Bayelsa are located in southern Nigeria, much farther south than Boko Haram’s usual area of
operation. However, the targeted nature of this persecution raises questions as to the true influence and reach
that Boko Haram has in southern Nigeria.