<!– Pastor Elijah Amos of the Celestial Church of Christ a.k.a Isaiah 43vs3 Cathedral) –>
An Ogun state pastor has denied an alleged gathering in his church, saying his neighbours only want to implicate him.
Pastor Elijah Amos of the Celestial Church of Christ (a.k.a Isaiah 43vs3 Cathedral) have sought for justice over an allegation by his neighbour that he has been holding church services despite the lockdown directive and threat to destroy his church.
This came, following a recent report on the social media by the pastor’s neighbour (name undisclosed), who lives close to the church, alleging that the church had been holding services every Sunday despite government’s lockdown and social distancing directives.
The report which went viral prompted the State Police Command to deploy its operative in the company of the COVID-19 Task Force and some pressmen to the area on Sunday, April 26 at 10:45 am to confirm the allegation. The pastor was promptly arrested alongside his disciples and was later released.
But Elijah who lives in the church situated in Asero Estate with some of his disciples in an interview with journalists debunked the allegation, insisting that since the inception of the lockdown, he had directed his members to worship at home until government lifts the ban.
He further explained that the allegation could not be unconnected to the fact that his neighbour had always complained that he doesn’t want to see any white garment church in the vicinity, recalling that he (the neighbour) had threatened to do anything possible to send the church out of the area.
His words “A church member called me and said he saw something on Facebook that the neighbour living behind my church said he would expose the church to the world that we are holding services. The DPO of Obantoko came around 7:30 pm on Sunday, looking around to see if we were holding service.
He told me that someone just informed the Commissioner that there was service going on. When he found out there was nothing going on, he left. The following morning, around 6:30 am I saw two men hanging around my fence, on interrogation they confessed to being pressmen, saying they were sent by a friend to spy on me.”
Some residents of the area who spoke on condition of anonymity also stressed that the church, since the lockdown order had not held service.
When contacted the District Police Officer (DPO) of Obantoko Police Division, Beyioku Kehinde who earlier went to the area on Saturday, April 26 at 7:pm for investigation, he confirmed that he visited the church several times for investigation but there were no services held has alleged by the pastor’s neighbour.
The DPO added that he was also there on Sunday morning, April 26 for another investigation but there was no worship session going on in the church. According to him, after the investigation, he visited the neighbour who levelled the allegation and he told him that there was no reason for the church to be in that area.
He said “The first time I went there I only met the pastor and his family member, no church service was going on. On Sunday again I went there and nothing of such was going on. When I interviewed the man (the neighbour), he said that the church was not supposed to be there but I told him that was not my business.”
The DPO added “It’s like there’s an unsettled dispute between them. Based on what the man complained we did not find the pastor guilty. All I discovered was that the man was only trying to implicate the pastor”.
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