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Winners’ Chapel headquarters’ pastor/accountant, woman face $90, 000, N4.5m theft charge

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…remanded in Kirikiri, Lagos

 

A pastor serving in Faith Tabernacle, headquarters of Living Faith Church worldwide, Ota in Ogun, Afolabi Samuel and a woman accomplice, Blessing Komolafe, have been arraigned in Lagos for allegedly stealing $90, 000 and N4.5 million, property of the church,

 

The duo is facing a two-count charge of stealing and conspiracy at an Ikeja Special Offences Court, Lagos, brought against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

 

They pleaded not guilty.

 

The EFCC alleged that the accused stole $90, 000 and N4.5 million property of the Registered Trustees of the church, also known as Winners’ Chapel.

 

Samuel is also an accountant in the church while Kolawole, a staff of the church’s Covenant University, Ota, who is now on the run.

 

According to the EFCC Prosecutor, Mr S. O. Daji, the defendant, the church’s accountant, committed the offences sometime in Sept. 24, 2018 and December 31, 2018 in Lagos.

 

The duo conspired and stole the money and converted it to personal use, he told the court.

 

A petition had been forwarded to the EFCC dated June 26, 2019 and signed by Chioma Okwuanyi & Co. (legal practitioners), Pastor Samuel was employed in the Accounts Department of the church to maintain proper records of funds.

The firm, acting as Solicitors to the Registered Trustees of the Living Faith Church, said that both Pastor Samuel and Mrs Kolawole connived with other criminals and started taking advantage of their positions as the Church’s Treasurer and a staff of the university respectively by stealing the money.

 

The EFCC alleged that Samuel and one Mrs Blessing Kolawole, a staff of the Covenant University (now at large), conspired and dishonesty stole money and property of the Registered Trustees of the Living Faith Church.

 

The pastor and Mrs Kolawole were accused of dishonestly converting the sum of $90, 000 and N4.5 million to their own personal use.

 

However, according to a petition to EFCC dated June 26, 2019 and signed by Chioma Okwuanyi & Co legal practitioners, Pastor Samuel was employed in the Accounts Department of the church to maintain proper records of funds.

 

The firm, acting as Solicitors to the Registered Trustees of the Living Faith Church, said that both Pastor Samuel and Mrs. Kolawole connived with other criminals and started taking criminal advantage of their positions as the Church’s Treasurer and a staff of the university respectively.

 

The offences violate Sections 278, 285 and 490 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State 2011.

 

In her ruling, Justice Mojisola Dada, remanded the pastor at the Kirikiri Correctional Centre (prison) and adjourned the case until Dec. 10, 2019, for the hearing of the bail application.

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