*** waves olive branch to Emeka’s supporters
Christopher Isiguzo in Enugu
The General Superintendent of the Assemblies of God Nigeria (AGN), Rev. Chidi Okorafor on Saturday in Enugu hailed the judiciary for ending the leadership crisis that had polarised the Church, describing last Friday’s Supreme Court judgment which recognised him as tne authentic leader of thd church as divine.
The leadership crisis rocking the Church had come to an end on Friday as the Supreme Court in a unanimous judgement by five Justices, resolved all the issues in favour of the General Council of the Church.
Following the suspension of the former leader of the church, Rev. Paul Emeka by the General Council, he had approached an Enugu State High Court where he got a favourable judgement.
The respondents in the matter, including the General Superintendent, Okoroafor proceeded to the Appeal Court where the judgement of the lower court was upturned.
Emeka later headed to the Supreme Court insisting that his fundamental rights were trampled upon.
But in a judgement on Friday, the apex Court ruled that fundamental right enforcement could not fly over the Assemblies of God leadership.
In the lead judgment by Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, the apex court affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeal in Enugu, which had upheld the suspension and dismissal of Emeka by the church.
Reacting to the judgement shortly after returning from the meeting of Assemblies of God Alliance, (AGA), which took place in South Africa, Okorafor said there was nothing to celebrate as the fact had remained clear from the beginning.
“Satan came to distract us from our focus and vision, the Lord has given knock to the distraction from the devil and we are moving forward. I came in this afternoon from South Africa where I attended the meeting of Assemblies of God Alliance, made up of General Superintendents of AG from about 40 nations in Africa. On my return, I heard of the news that the apex court has given a judgement and in that judgement, the court upheld the Court of Appeal judgment which had earlier upheld the decision of the General Committee of AGN of March 6, 2014.
“I want to appreciate the God of our founding fathers who influenced the court decision, I want to appreciate our judiciary, this has given us more confidence in the judiciary, the objectiveness of the handling of this matter, to God be the glory. We also appreciate our gallant legal team, our members who have remained unwavering in their support for us,” he said.
The church leader noted there was no victor or the vanquished in the matter, insisting that “it’s about the Church, and not about who won. AG is a special church with a unique mission.
He further extended olive branch to pastors and members of the church who “were sincerely deceived” to return to the church as he had already forgiven all those who joined forces against the church throughout the period the matter lingered in court.
On the formal takeover of the church’s headquarters occupied by the ousted Pastor Emeka, he disclosed that copies of the judgment had been forwarded to the police, expressinf relief that the headquarters which used to be a “harbinger of thugs” had now been taken over by the police in the aftermath of the judgement.
He said the General Council of the church would be meeting before Monday to take formal position on the matter while urging their teeming members across the country to remain calm.