By Olayinka LATONA
A group known as Celestial Church of Christ Unification and Reform Group (CCCRUG) has petitioned the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) on the need to avoid violent religious unrest as a result of people parading themselves as pastors of the CCC Worldwide in disobedience of the Supreme Court judgment which pronounced that there is no pastor within the church until its constitution is rewritten.
In the petition signed by the groupâ€™s secretary, Mr. Dele Ojogbede and copied to the Lagos State Police Commissioner, Mr. Marvel Akpoyibo, the CCCRUG stated that for selfish and financial gains, these members have â€œdivided the Celestial fold into various factions where they are purportedly operating and parading themselves as pastors without following the due process of law.
Ojogbede stated that those pretending to be pastors would be held for contempt of the court, and called on the Police to arrest such a negative development aimed at rubbishing the judgment of the highest court in the land.
Our reporter gathered that based on the petition, the Assistant Inspector-General of Police (Intelligence) directed the Lagos State Police boss to monitor the activities of the parties concerned. They include Josiah Owodunni, Paul Maforikan and Steven Orovboni. Others are Godwin Shonekan and Edward Oladesu as well as Emmanuel Oshoffa.
The factional leaders of the CCC were thereafter invited to the Lagos State Police Command on â€˜a fact finding investigationâ€™.
According to Ojogbede; â€œour group held that there would be the need for us to file contempt charges against the individual violators of the subsisting judgment of the Supreme Court by compiling their names and taking specific contempt of court proceedings against them, to put a halt to the violation of the law which has dealt untold damage to the existence of the churchâ€.
He also stated that the issue of a pastor in the CCC â€œis a divine inspiration buttressed by the churchâ€™s constitution that there should be only one pastor within the CCC in order to facilitate the unification of the whole church which was precedent as emphasized by the Supreme Court judgment for the resolution of the impasse within the churchâ€.
According to him, the group has sent a strongly worded message to those pretending to be pastors, under different claims and counter-claims that unless they surrender their claims and embrace unification efforts, they would be held for contempt of court.