Onyeze Jesus, an Anambra pastor who was arrested after filming his followers during a naked bathing ritual, says people thought he was possessed by an evil spirit as a kid.

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The Anambra government had initiated an investigation into the fraud claims made against Onyeze by some of his ex-followers.

The controversial clergyman spoke of his journey towards becoming a pastor in an interview with BBC Igbo.

Onyeze said he used to whip cassava plants so often that his mother was told he was possessed. He said he was later discovered by Ejike Mbaka, famed spiritual director of Adoration Ministry Enugu Nigeria (AMEN).

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“Before I started this job, I used to flog cassava plant as a child with whips such that people would often tell my mum that it seems as though I was possessed by an evil spirit,” Onyeze said in Igbo.

“When I left the Catholic for a pentecostal church, I was made a choirmaster. I used to be an apprentice with a man called Ozonwa in Agulu. But he’s dead. There was a day I was to sell goods to a Bendel woman. I felt something sharp click around my left neck.

“When I recovered was when Father Mbaka was at the old site of his Adoration Ministry. He wanted to fetch the blessed sacrament but suddenly looked back towards me and said there’s a servant of God here.

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“He said the person was still a kid but his mission was due for accomplishment.”

Pointing out that he had no case with the Anambra state government, Onyeze said the governor had declined to interfere with religion when he learnt of the allegations against him.

“I never had any altercation with the state government. It never ordered my arrest. All the fuss was instigated by churches in Onitsha so it would look as though I nabbed,” the clergyman said.

“When the governor heard of it, he told them he had no business with religion. I hail from Amafo village.

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“About filming naked men. I would say it was a mistake by my associates. I told them not to make videos. I didn’t know they did.”



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