Nigerian Witchcraft: Pastor fights deceitful counterparts

Afriknews.com, 23 April 2009, Konye Obaji Ori
A Nigerian pastor has called on fellow pastors in Nigeria to stop deceiving people with the notion of witchcraft. Apostle John Okoriko, the founder and president of Solid Rock Kingdom Church in Nigeria has described the practice of pastors as shameful and manipulative. However such assumed witches and wizards are always the poor in society.

“It is embarrassing in 21st century where every nation is going scientific and to space that we are still talking about witchcraft. It is time we faced reality and not absurdity,” the pastor was quoted as saying.

The scotching attack was specifically aimed at renowned evangelist, church founder, film actor and movie producer, Mrs. Helen Ukpabio, who claims to be able to identify witches, deliver them from their evil power, or cast them to the abyss.

“This thing is dragging our state backward; people have been brainwashed to think negatively. If they suffer a slight misfortune in their businesses instead of looking for practical solution, the pastors will tell them that they are attacked by witches and the person will become a slave to the pastors. It is sad,” the pastor added.

Helen Ukpabio, the acclaimed witchcraft expert recently hosted a crusade in Akwa-Ibom state of Nigeria where she allegedly identified 500 witches. According to reports The 500 people, mostly children, voluntarily went out to label themselves witches or wizard in the crusade themed: Coven on Naked Wire. According to the fuming pastor, “If this state (Akwa-Ibom state) has been taken over by witchcraft, why can’t we use witchcraft to achieve good things; at least win international football matches? All we need to do is put eleven bewitched boys on the pitch and win the world cup.”

Eyewitness reports have claimed that the delivered witches and wizards were asked by Mrs. Ukpabio to attend the various branches of her church for eight months for them to be monitored and properly delivered.

Pastor Okoriko told reporters that Helen Ukpabio’s claim of delivering 500 witches and wizards was nothing but a charade since there were no such number of witches in Akwa-Ibom state. Such a claim is fraudulent and ungodly especially as they (the delivered witches and wizards) have been asked to attend the various branches of her church for eight months.

Pastor Helen Ukpabio has used the film industry to create a certain credibility for herself as an expert and force in the spiritual realm.

Despite the poverty, hardship and suffering that the political and economic instability in Nigeria creates amongst the poor, the acclaimed deliverer attributes it all to themaking of witches and wizards. In her movies, there is always a a certain display of witchcraft powers which eventually gets subdued by the power of the Holy Spirit.

The charismatic pastor who lives in a 60million Naira house in Calabar, southern Nigeria, has earned herself a huge crowd and followership across the country, as people continue to seek deliverance from witches and wizards in their everyday lives.

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