LDS temple in Nigeria closed due to violence

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Recent violence in temple in Aba, Nigeria has caused Latter-day Saint Church leaders to close their temple in that city.

Four gunmen with AK-47s struck a building in the temple compound. No one was injured in that gunfire at the compound, but there is unrest in that area constantly.

As the gunmen drove along the road that leads to the temple complex, they sprayed shots, and some of them hit the guardhouse at the entrance.

LDS Church spokesperson Scott Trotter, confirmed the incident resulted in eight bullet holes in the doors of the guard house.

Nigerian Church members say this was a crime incident and neither the temple, which is on a slight hill or rise, nor the Church was a target.

This statement about closing the temple came from Church Public Affairs today: "The safety of our temple visitors and workers is always our first concern. Incidents of violence in recent months in the area where the temple is situated are not necessarily related to the temple but could put Church members at risk.

**LDS Church in Nigeria**![](
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was established in Nigeria in 1978. There are currently 88,374 members in Nigeria. LDS Church President Gordon B. Hinckley announced a temple would be built in Aba, Nigeria during General Conference in April 2000. Ground was broken for the temple on February 23, 2002. It took almost three and a half years to build the temple, which was dedicated by Pres. Hinckley on August 7, 2005.
"As a precautionary measure, temple workers have been moved to other areas and the temple has been closed while the situation is being addressed."

Safety was the main concern four years ago when then-President Gordon B. Hinckley visited to dedicate the temple. He arrived and departed the area in a helicopter because bandits travel along that road daily.

In 2005 the area president us they are urged to travel during the day, as there are fewer crimes then.

Elder Sheldon F. Child at that time said, "When we run into difficulties is when we try to travel at night, but coming in the daytime, it'll be save."

KSL spoke Wednesday afternoon with Church Public Affairs and there is no word yet on when the temple will reopen.

Compiled with information from Andrew Adams and Carole Mikita

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