•Insist…‘We must be raptured together’

•Our children have been hypnotised — Parents

•Ondo govt rehabilitates victims

By Dayo Johnson

SOME of the victims rescued by the police from the dungeon of the Whole Bible Church, Ondo, in Ondo State, yesterday, vowed not to allow their pastors to languish in cell, insisting that they would stay at the police station, so as to be raptured with their pastors.

This came as parents of the victims have lamented that those rescued from the dungeon have refused to go home with them, and also eat, since Saturday.

Pastor David Anifowose and his assistant, Peter Josiah, had kept 77 worshippers in the church underground apartment in readiness for the rapture, which they said will take place in September.

Many of the victims have stayed in the church for a period of six months, abandoning their work, while students also did not go to school.

Some of the parents, from Kwara State and other parts of the country, who besieged the Ondo Police Command, in Akure, said their children, who relocated to the church, have insisted on staying at the police station until the arrested pastors are freed.

The parents lamented that their children have been hypnotised.

Our children have been hypnotised—Parents

One of the parents, who came from Ilorin, Oluwole Omoseebi, said his son, a 400-level student of Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ayobami Omoseebi, has been missing since 2020, during the COVID-19 period.

Omoseebi said: “I have a brother here in Akure whom my son is living with; he is a pastor too, but he told me my son has been coming home on weekends, and that he suspected his movements.

“I had to come down to Akure to find out what is happening, and I was told he was in a church in Ondo town, where I met the pastor and explained that I have been looking for my son, but he was violent that day and had to drive me away from the church with one of his sons.

“The boy returned to Ilorin thereafter and I warned him against returning to the church but he went back to the church after the school resumed. Since then, we never set our eyes on him.”

Also speaking, another parent, Michael Olorunyomi, said that his 21-year-old daughter, Priscilla, had refused to eat since Saturday claiming that the pastor must be released.

Olorunyomi said: “I was a member of that church and I was there for 32 years. Everything about the church changed when Peter Josiah became an assistant pastor in the church. He brought in destructive heresy.

“After they were brought to Akure on Saturday, my daughter was released to me but my daughter said she will not follow me.

“She said until all those who were arrested are released, she will not follow me.

“Since we got home on Saturday night, she has refused to eat up till this moment. I’m seriously bothered because of the situation.”

Similarly, a brother to one of the victims, Wande Oladapo said: “My brother has refused to go home after he was released on Saturday. He said he will not leave his pastor alone in the cell.”

Arrested clerics‘ll be charged to court soon —Police

Briefing newsmen, the spokesperson for the state police command, Funmi Odunlami said that the arrested pastors will be charged to court upon completion of investigation.

Odunlami said: “Despite all our attempts and placation some of the victims refused to go home, saying they were going to stay here.

“We have a child who said she will follow the Lord and not her parents. “She said she was okay staying within the police compound since their pastor is still here.”

Ondo govt rehabilitates victims

Also speaking, the Commissioner for Women Affairs, in the state, Mrs Julianah Osadahun said: “We just interviewed some of the children who are between 11 and 17 years old. The way they spoke seems they have been hypnotized.

“They speak with so much confidence that God will soon come (rapture) and they are on a seven day camp. They have not eaten for seven days and they still want to go on fasting.

“What baffles me as a mother is that these children are already hardened from the interview we conducted with them. They are indoctrinated.

“Some of the parents of the children even told us that they left the church when they started seeing some strange things.

“We also want to know if the Pastor partially believes there should be no education. But we were made to know that he has two children who are educated and graduated and now equally members of the church.”

“We also want to have a data base of the children through family tracing from the Ministry so that we can get to how these children were hypnotised and indoctrinated. And if they need rehabilitation, then we would have to go legally by taking custody of the children.

“The way some of the children are talking, they should even be taken to the rehabilitation homes. They are living in different world entirely. They look so wired.”


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