A clergyman, Primate Babatunde Elijah Ayodele, Saturday appealed to the Lagos state Government to forego prosecution of the Synagogue Church of All Nations, SCOAN, for the murder of about 120 people last year.
The collapse of a guesthouse located within the SCOAN premises last year killed the worshipers, mostly South Africans.
Ayodele said his concern stemmed from the positive roles the church and its founder, Pastor Temitope Joshua, play in society.
“I have never met him though, but as a Christian leader I am concerned about how a possible prosecution of the church will affect the positive roles it plays in society. I am aware, as many other Nigerians that the man is involved in charity work, social and economic empowerment, among others. Aside, he (Joshua) is also enmeshed in spiritual and healing works, and obviously many lives have been saved through that”, Ayodele stated.
Ayodele, who is founder, INRI Evangelical Spiritual Church, in Lagos, added: “the healing and miracles being done by Joshua, just like any genuine man of God will always have consequences, including attacks by dark forces. But as children of God, we are empowered to fight and defeat them with prayers. The ways of God are a mystery to man, so it is difficult to reject Joshua’s explanation for the collapse. We should leave judgement to God, even as families of the dead have forgiven the church, and were seen to have recently hosted him to a lavish birthday party in South Africa”.
A coroner inquest in Lagos last week indicted the SCOAN, the building contractor and recommended their prosecution. The coroner, Oyetade Komolafe, also recommended that the DPO of Ikotun Police Division be transferred from the area for frustrating investigation.