Leo Igwe

Leo Igwe (born July 26, 1970) is a Nigerian human rights advocate and humanist. Igwe is a former Western and Southern African representative of the International Humanist and Ethical Union, and has specialized in campaigning against and documenting the impacts of child witchcraft accusations. He holds a Ph.D from the Bayreuth International School of African Studies at the University of Bayreuth in Germany, having earned a graduate degree in Philosophy from the University of Calabar in Nigeria. Igwe's human rights advocacy has brought him into conflict with high-profile witchcraft believers, such as Liberty Foundation Gospel Ministries, because of his criticism of what he describes as their role in the violence and child abandonment that sometimes result from accusations of witchcraft. His human rights fieldwork has led to his arrest on several occasions in Nigeria. Igwe has held leadership roles in the Nigerian Humanist Movement, Atheist Alliance International, and the Center For Inquiry—Nigeria. In 2012, Igwe was appointed as a Research Fellow of the James Randi Educational Foundation, where he continues working toward the goal of responding to what he sees as the deleterious effects of superstition, advancing skepticism throughout Africa and around the world. In 2014, Igwe was chosen as a laureate of the International Academy of Humanism and in 2017 received the Distinguished Services to Humanism Award from the International Humanist and Ethical Union. Igwe was raised in southeastern Nigeria, and describes his household as being strictly Catholic in the midst of a "highly superstitious community," according to an interview in the Gold Coast Bulletin.[1] At age twelve, Igwe entered the seminary, beginning to study for the Catholic priesthood, but later was confused by conflicting beliefs between Christian theology and the beliefs in witches and wizards that are "entrenched in Nigerian society."[1] After a period of research and internal conflict due to doubts about the "odd blend of tribalism and fundamentalist Christianity he believes is stunting African development," a 24-year-old Igwe resigned from the seminary and relocated to Ibadan, Nigeria

Nigerian Juju
Leo Igwe on 27th Oct

By Leo Igwe On October 23, 2018, I addressed a stakeholder meeting, the Academy of Nations, in Munich in Germany. This meeting...

Leo Igwe on 13th Mar

I want to share with you the reasons why I am a humanist and why I have devoted the last two decades of my life working and...

Leo Igwe on 08th Mar

There is something wrong with the way that President Muhammadu Buhari is tackling the security challenges in the country....

Leo Igwe on 02nd Mar

Where are the skeptics in Mozambique? Where are the critical thinking persons in this country and what are they doing? Going by the statistics out there, Mozambique is one of the most irreligious nations in Africa. According to the 2007 census, about 20 percent of the population has no religion. However, it seems that the non-religiosity in this country...

Chicken Sacrifice for WitchCraft
Leo Igwe on 27th Feb

Recently, there have been reported incidents of harmful acts that are connected with traditional beliefs and practices across...

witchcraft
Leo Igwe on 17th Feb

A local non-governmental organization, the Basic Rights Counsel Initiative (BRCI), in Calabar has just released horrific...

Leo Igwe
Leo Igwe on 20th Aug

Belief in the potency of charms persists in many parts of Nigeria, and Africa despite the spread of modern education, science...

Poor Malawi
Leo Igwe on 11th Nov

“Having soberly reflected on our beloved country’s socio-economic and political context, we note with dismay that...

African Women Who Question Religion
Leo Igwe on 02nd May

She is from Zimbabwe in Southern Africa but currently lives in Canada. Rudo, 30 is a skeptic with a mission, a salient ‘silent’...