Few days ago, a nine year old boy, identified as Korede Taiwo was held hostage and chained at a Celestial Church of Christ (Key of Joy Parish), Ajibawo. The victim was rescued by the Nigerian Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC) at Ajibawo in Ado-Odo, Ota LGA of Ogun State, on Friday, July 22, 2016.
The boy was said to have been chained by his biological father, who’s also the spiritual leader in the said parish for weeks after he was accused of stealing from the pot by his step mother, Mrs. Kehinde, She was said to have reported the matter to her husband who bound the boy’s hands and legs in chains.
Meanwhile, the Celestial Church of Christ, Worldwide has condemned the dastardly act of Francis Taiwo who chained and tortured his nine-year-old son in an official press statement.
“The attention of Reverend Emmanuel Mobiyina Oshoffa, Pastor and Spiritual Head and the Board of Trustees of the Celestial Church of Christ, has been drawn to media reports concerning the activities of one Prophet Francis Taiwo, Shepherd in Charge, Celestial Church of Christ (CCC), Key of Joy Parish, Ajiwo at Ajibawo in Ado Odo/Ota local government area of Ogun State.
Prophet Francis Taiwo was reported to have chained his nine year old son and starved him of food for months, after the boy was accused of habitual stealing. The nine year old boy was eventually rescued by men of the NSCDC who stormed the church premises for that purpose. Latest reports indicate that the culprit, Prophet Francis Taiwo was later arrested by the police with the help of his church members.
This report has drawn the ire of the public and our great church has been receiving undeserved flaks there from. We are therefore compelled to issue this statement to correct whatever misconceptions that might have been created about the church, in the minds of the general public, by this shameful and totally unacceptable incident.
Let it be known that the Celestial Church of Christ does not condone child abuse and violence of any form. We recognise and place high value on our youths and children as we acknowledge them as the salt of the earth and a vital part of the future of any given stratum of society, organisation, church or nation.
Our belief is that children therefore must be raised in an atmosphere of love, Christian values and reasonable and acceptable parental discipline. The fact that the said Prophet Francis Taiwo was arrested by the police with the help of his church members lends credence to the fact that our church abhors child abuse, domestic violence and inhumanity of any form.
We commend the NSCDC and the Nigeria Police for a job promptly well done, and wish to assure the general public that the Celestial Church of Christ is already taking a further look into the matter.
The Celestial Church of Christ avails itself of this opportunity to thank the general public for its concerns. May the good Lord be with you all, Amen.”
The victim has been adopted by the Ogun state government while his father and the step mother begged for forgiveness in the police custody.
Yet another ugly incident happened on Thursday, July 28, 2016, barely a week after Korede was rescued when the Ogun Police Command rescued another child, 10-year-old Promise Udeh, who was found, chained in a house at Saraki, Adigbe area of Abeokuta, Ogun State.
The acting Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Abimbola Oyeyemi, said Promise was chained by her aunt, Chiamaka Okafor, who accused her of stealing N4,000. She was chained for two days before her rescue.
ENCOMIUM Weekly sampled opinion of the general public about the rising cases of Child abuse across the country. Many described it as outrightly wickedness.
I felt bad when I heard about this incident, even if it will happen anywhere, it shouldn’t be in a church of God. What are churches turning into, it should be a place where people will have the fear of God and not otherwise. It’s shocking hearing that a man of God chained his son. For what? What is he thinking about? Only God can help us on this issue because there are thousands of other children like that who are still trapped in such mess.
Maybe I will suggest that the activities of those churches should be checked to see what’s going on in them. A lot are happening in places of worship today especially white garment churches. The Lord will help us.
MRS. BUNMI ADEBO
The whole thing is mind mending, how can you abuse a child for stealing. Before a child will go to the extent of stealing, you need to know the reasons. You need to talk to the child about the implication of what he’s doing and not severe abuse.
Another mistake many people make is they are not friendly with those kids, when you allow a child develop fear for you being the parent or guardian, you are indirectly planting another spirit in the child. We need to be more friendly with these kids, we need to stand as one and say, No to child abuse. Either the child is yours or not, we should learn to respect them and avoid inhuman acts.
PASTOR KOLAWOLE AJAYI
Our religious beliefs should not turn us to something else, how can a normal person chain a nine year old boy like this and everyone in church took it to be fine. I wonder what the pastor or guardian who engaged in this act was thinking about. I can’t imagine how cruel some people could be. Thank God he was rescued from those devilish extremists.