Bishop Emmah Isong calls for Whistle Blow against Fake Pastors
Bishop Emmah Isong, National Publicity Secretary of Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) and General Overseer of Christian Chapel International, has called on the general public to act as whistle blowers against fake Pastors.
He made this call today during a telephone conversation with presenters of “The Hit Breakfast Show”, a program of Hit 95.9 FM radio, Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria. The topic of discussion was, “The Christian Doctrine and Churches as regards Rituals and Occultism”. This was against the backdrop of last week’s incident in Calabar where a “church” was razed by a mob, on allegations of ritual practices there. The “church” is reportedly known as Royal Christian Ministry International, owned by “Pastor” Tony Obo. It is located at number 3, Okon Edak street, off Atamunu, Calabar South.
Bishop Isong admonished that “If there are people who are having terrible experiences of rape or dupe or of wrong sacrifices they are making in the name of Christ, they can be whistle blowers. I am thinking that what happened to this young man (“Pastor” Obo) it could have been influenced by a whistle blower. People should blow the whistle.” However, he added that “you could be sued for libel if there are no direct evidence.”
Also, Bishop Isong explained that although PFN has powers to discipline its members, “some of these people are not members and on the other line, the constitution of Nigeria provides for freedom of worship, freedom of association and freedom of education. Because of this freedom, you would be trampling on another person’s right by eavesdropping into his affairs.” Therefore, he said that it is only the law enforcement agents or security agencies that can discipline those who infringe on the rights of other people.
Bishop Isong advised Christians to be circumspect in their choices of places of worship, stating that “no real Christian uses any other tool other than the Bible to preach the Word of God”. He said: “My warnings to seekers of miracles is that they should be able to access where they are going to and the requirements demanded”.
It would be recalled that last Thursday (August 24, 2017), the headquarters of “Pastor” Obo’s “church” at number 3 Okon Edak street, Calabar South, was razed by a mob on allegations that a one year old baby was buried inside the “church”. A branch of the “church” located at Abua street, also in Calabar South, was demolished by an angry crowd. Used sanitary pads, underwear, men’s pictures corked in bottles and fetish objects were allegedly found in the “church”. Those items were burnt by the mob.
Meanwhile, contributors to today’s “The Hit Breakfast Show” unanimously condemned the proliferation of what they described as miracle churches in Calabar. They stated that last week’s incident should serve as a good lesson to those who rely on such places.
For instance, Dan who called on telephone from Calabar, said: “People no longer pray. They believe in miracles. In the past, even Jesus who performed miracles, fasted and prayed for forty days and forty nights. But you see now, people no longer pray. They believe in miracles, commanding lizard to come out of somebody’s body. So let what happened happen. If people believe in themselves and have little faith, very little, nobody would go to all these churches. Like I always say, I can’t go to a church that I senior. Any church I an older than, I cannot go to that church.”
Also, Mary, who called from Marian, Calabar, said, “We do not need all these people to lay hands on us to receive miracles or for us to be blessed. We need to have a personal and sincere relationship with God. There is no way we would pray that God would not answer us…. Sharp sharp miracles don’t work.”
She called for the prosecution of the accused Pastor of that “church” and his alleged collaborators and said: “They shouldn’t let him go like that or they shouldn’t make them go like that. They should pay for what they have done. They should be a follow-up. Otherwise, tomorrow they would go to another place and establish another ‘church’. They should pay for it.”
Echa Emmanuel’s contribution via his twitter account (@atamemmanuel) stated: “Calabar has the highest number of churches and yet is amongst one of the highest cities with church related criminal activities. Nigerians have to learn patience and hard work while they seek the right lifestyle that does not go against the lives of people in the society. #assignmentchurches #hbs #blessedmonday”.
According to today’s HIT 95.9 FM Calabar’s 6.00pm news bulletin, ASP Irene Ugbo, Public Relations Officer of Cross River State Police Command has stated that “Pastor” John Obo is still in Police custody, contrary to widespread rumors that he has been released. She has reportedly promised that the Police would investigate and pursue allegations against him according to laid down laws.
- Cornelius Ellah