My story, by Prophet Oluwamodede
By Dayo Johnson, Akure
Prophet Samson Oluwamodede heads the Prayer Centre Church of God, PCCG, with headquarters in Akure, the Ondo State capital and branches within and outside the country. He established the church 14 years ago after receiving divine instruction from God. But the unexpected happened recently when an ex-convict, Festus Balogun, allegedly blackmailed him and 11 other notable clergymen, accusing them of ritual killings and other fetish activities.
In this interview, he bares his mind on the allegations leveled against him by the ex-convict who said he was promised N300, 000 by a marketer to malign the men of God but eventually duped after rolling out a compact disk titled Asiritu ( secret exposed) where he claimed that the pastors engaged him to kill for them to gain spiritual power.
What was your reaction when you heard about the video CD that you are a fetish prophet?
When I heard about the CD, I could not believe until a member of the church brought a copy of the CD to me and I watched the video. After watching it, I was highly embarrassed. At the initial stage, I did not take it serious but, as times went by, I saw what was happening within the church and how members were arguing and fighting in their offices on the veracity or otherwise of the fake CD. The CD went viral on the internet. And people began to say to our church members that ‘your pastor is very fetish”. That was then I knew something had gone wrong and that I needed to act. I prayed and asked God for direction. At that time, men who said CD at the market were showing the video in open places for people to watch. There was a day I was in my car passing through the market area and I saw large a number of people watching television and I asked what they were watching and they said “Asiritu”. I was ashamed of myself that day. In the video, he mentioned 12 of us, but I prayed that God should intervene and let the truth be told to the same public to protect my integrity.
Did you contemplate seeking redress in court after the CD was released and your name was mentioned?
I was waiting for other clerics whose names were mentioned in the offensive CD, such as Pastor Samuel Abiara, Bishop Samson Ayorinde, Prophet T.B Joshua and others to react. But none of them reacted. I was thinking may be because the suspect recorded the video in Yoruba language and since services in T.B Joshua’s church and other pastors are conducted in English language, only few members may be interested in the video. Again, the video was not as popular in Lagos as in Ondo, Oyo and Ekiti states. Five months after, I decided that if the other people would not react, I will take a step because this may lead to religious crisis among Christians. So I contacted the legal team of our church and they wrote a petition to the police not knowing that other indicted men of God have done similar thing and that security operatives had been on the trail of the suspect. He was later apprehended by police detectives and he confessed that he lied against us for pecuniary gain.
Is your said accuser a former member of your church or have you had any dealing with him before now?
He was never a member of our church and I have not met or had any contact with him. He must have been hearing what God has been doing in the lives of people who attend our programmes and decided to to blackmail me for money. The day God arrested him through the police, I was invited to the station, but I could not make it to the police command on that day. I told them that I will come the following day because I was having a programme in the church. But an Investigating Police Officer (IPO) called me that the suspect was insisting that if I was bold enough, I should come and face him. He was asked by the detectives if he could recognise me if he me and he said, yes, I was tall and light in complexion. When I was going, I was accompanied by four elders from the church. When we got there, I saw him sitting and the police detectives asked him again in our presence if he knew Prophet Oluwamodede but, this time, he remained silent and was unable to identify me amongst the five men that were in the room with him and the detectives.
It was thereafter that I revealed my identity and immediately I asked him why lied against me and other men of God. He prostrated and held my leg. I asked him why he blackmailed me. The police put in the CD in a video machine and when he got to where he was confessing about my alleged atrocities, the suspect said, ‘Prophet Samson Oluwamodede used to hold a programme called marathon fasting and during that programme, he would prepare tea for people and that the water used for the tea was from River Osun in Osun State’. He alleged that I would have bathed with that water before using it to prepare the tea. I asked him if it is true that I used to go to River Osun to get water and he immediately said no that he cook up the lies for pecuniary gains.
Your accuser also said you slaughter cows every year as part of your fetish activities .
He lied against me and I have prayed for him because he is an agent of the devil. Thank God he has publicly denounced all the lies about me and the other 11 clerics. Yes he said that I used to take two cows to Ilogbo-Ekiti for ritual purposes every year and I asked him again if he had ever seen me at Ilogbo-Ekiti and he said no. The third one was that he always killed human being on my behalf. He also mentioned a mountain that I used to go and pray. He was right about that but I asked the police to allow the suspect to take us to the mountain and he said he didn’t know the mountain again. One of the elders of our church asked him about the person who contracted him to lie about me and others? He said it was the devil that pushed him to do so. He said since the CD was produced, he had seen the anger of God and he started begging. He told us at the police station that he was ready to produce another video CD to correct the wrong impression about the 12 clerics but the Commissioner of Police said he could not release him because members of the public may lynch him because he had fooled them by his lies.
As a prophet, was there a time God revealed to you that such an accuser would one day lie against you and bring you to disrepute?
In 2012, we were in a programme, and my members can testify to this, I told them that, very soon, somebody would lie against me. In 2012, 2013 and 2014, we did not hear anything until late last year when the suspect produced the video CD. I am sure the technical department of my ministry will still have the tape of the programme but I did not know it would be of this magnitude
After the CD went viral, was there any adverse effect on the size of the congregation during your church services?
The number of people attending the church services and programmes didn’t reduce because, nearly every day, we received new members but the numbers of old church members reduced at a time. I think the old members were a little bit confused that if the allegations were not true, I ought to have reacted five or six months after the CD was released. How I knew the old members had reduced was that, during the last marathon fasting we held in the church, the population was so high and it came to my mind to ask how many of these people were worshipping with us for the first time, and about 30 percent of them raised their hands, and I said if my old members had not left, the population should be more than that. So, I felt the impact of the blackmail.
Is this the first time you will be lied against?
People have lied against me severally since the ministry started 14 years ago, but such lies were products of envy. None has lied against me to the extend it of rubbishing the work of God or damaging my integrity.
Do you believe in predictions? If yes, what are your predictions for the year?
Yes, I believe in predictions because I do hear from God but I stopped making my predictions public over five years ago. Let me tell you the reason I stopped telling my members about my predictions. Anytime I told my members about my predictions, you would see many pastors coming into our church to jot down all what I said and they would go to their own church and start telling their members that this was what God told them about what would happen in the year. They were doing this to keep their congregation and also ensure their members believed in them. So I stopped making the predictions public. Since I stopped, I never heard any of these pastors predicting again.