NAIROBI, Kenya — A Muslim upset with his wife’s conversion to Christianity in western Uganda denied her food and left her in a national park with wild animals, she said.
Sharifa Muhando, 27, of Kasese town, said her husband beat her and kept her from food for a week after learning that she had put her faith in Christ. The mother of a 2-year-old boy had kept her faith hidden from her husband, Musa Bwambale, and other relatives after accepting Christ on July 9, 2021.
On May 10 at about 7 p.m., Muhando prayed in her room, read from her Bible and fell asleep, she said.
“Unfortunately I left the door open,” Muhando told Morning Star News from her hospital bed. “My husband came back from his place of work and called me, and I didn’t respond because I was deep in sleep. He opened the door and found me with my Bible and a notebook on my chest. He shouted, ‘Allah Akbar [Allah is greater]!’”
The shouting of the jihadist slogan woke her.
“I was terrified after seeing him; he asked me what the matter was,” she said. “I answered him that this is a holy book. He got annoyed and beat me that night and told me that he was punishing me for leaving Islam, and that he will automatically be rewarded in Jannah [paradise] by Allah.”
Since that night he kept her from eating, she said, adding that after two days he threatened to kill her if she told anyone.
On May 17, Bwambale took her to nearby Queen Elizabeth National Park, she said.
“My husband said he had received a dream from Allah of taking me somewhere,” Muhando told Morning Star News. “He took me on his vehicle and dumped me inside Queen Elizabeth National Park to be eaten by wild animals.”
The pastor of the church she had been secretly attending happened to drive by on the main road bordering the park, which is not fenced, and spotted her, she said. He called others to help him, and they took her to a medical clinic.
“Sharifa’s health was in a bad state,” said the pastor, whose name is withheld for security reasons, “and she has been undergoing treatment while suffering from injuries — her spleen especially was affected, as her husband hit her with a blunt object, and she has pain around the neck. The doctors are also treating her for starvation and trauma-related symptoms.”
While preparing to report the case to police, he learned that Bwambale had died in a traffic accident, the pastor said.
“At the moment Sharifa needs prayers for quick healing and recovery from trauma and for her future life,” he said.
The attack was the latest of many instances of persecution of Christians in Uganda that Morning Star News has documented.
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% of Uganda’s population, with high concentrations in eastern areas of the country.
Morning Star News is the only independent news service focusing exclusively on the persecution of Christians. The nonprofit's mission is to provide complete, reliable, even-handed news in order to empower those in the free world to help persecuted Christians, and to encourage persecuted Christians by informing them that they are not alone in their suffering.