People will Come to Church to Fake Injury or Loss of Valuables in Order to Get Judgment Against the Church
Though a couple of impetuous stories have stabbed the personality of the publisher and author of the popular devotional, Our Daily Manna, Bishop Chris Kwakopvwe-including frivolous allegations of sexual misconduct—which have not been proven and vehemently denied by the Man of God who stuck to his guns insisting that his hands are clean, the recent pronouncement of a Lagos High Court granting the prayers of Miss Tamara Egbedi for special and general damages has caused him more trauma.
However, the gregarious Bishop remained unbowed, telling a group of journalists that he has accepted the challenge of the declaration from the temple of justice as a personal task which he must prosecute to a logical end on behalf of the worldwide community of Christians.
A statement by the ministry views this case as a persecution of the body of Christ. “It is spiritual warfare. If not checked, it could happen to any other ministry. There has never been a case like this in Nigeria. The novelty of the matter compels us to take every necessary step possible. We are concerned that people may start coming to church to fake an injury or loss of personal belonging for which they will go to court and get a judgment against the church. That is the reality that is starring us in the face. It is a satanic agenda.”
The ministry further warned pastors, churches or ministries to be wary of possible syndicates that may be using people or purported attendees to claim injuries at their well-organized proggrammes. “Their aim is cash. Please, never pay anybody except as an act of benevolence. Once you pay, they will continue to claim injury every time you have a programme.”
Justice SBA Candido-Johnson of the Lagos High Court had awarded N9,454,000 to Miss Tamara Egbedi for special and general damages against the registered trustees of Chapel of Liberty and Rev. (now Bishop) Dr. Chris Kwakpovwe.
Egbedi who is a lawyer approached the court with a claim that she fell into an uncovered gutter and broke her teeth when she attended the end of fast World Anointing Service organized by the ministry on January 22, 2010 at the National Stadium in Surulere, Lagos.
The sprawling and fascinating history of the case placed before the court by the ministry did not appear to be convincing in many instances. The uncannily prescient Kwakpovwe argued among other points that his ministry has never recorded an ugly incident at similar programmes which attracts a huge crowd of attendees in over 52 countries. The sitting area used by the ministry for the 2010 programme at the Nationa Stadium was floodlit and there were over 300 ushers to ensure worshippers’ comfort and safety.
On the morning of January 23, 2010 Egbedi emerged with the claim that she fell into a gutter within the premises of the National Stadium when she came for the programme. None of the ushers or medical personnel on duty saw her with the alleged injuries on the night of the programme. There were ambulances from Lagos State government with medical doctors and nurses on duty to attend to emergencies but none of them saw her.
She claimed that she fell into the gutter at about 9pm. At about 5am when the programme had ended and worshippers were on their way home, she demanded to speak to the Bishop who was at that time ministering to some people with special cases on the altar. As the ushers were trying to ascertain her reason to see the Bishop, she started shouting at the top of her voice. This caught the attention of the Bishop who immediately granted her audience but her first utterance was a rude shock.
She said, “See my mouth…. I will sue you for this injury. My lawyers are outside.”
The Bishop, in an attempt to understand what was happening, wanted to calm her down so that she could narrate what had happened to her, but she then screamed, “Don’t touch me!”
One of the female pastors present was instructed to attend to her and get the full details of her complaint and to offer her N100,000 for treatment. As the pastor approached her for her story, she said she wanted N2.5million as compensation for the alleged injury.