Alleged N700m Fraud: Assemblies of God Church Begins Probe of Sacked General Superintendent
The Assemblies of God Church, Nigeria, has set up an 11-man panel to investigate the 36-point allegations including alleged misappropriation of fund raised against the former General Superintendent of the Church, Rev. (Prof.) Paul Emeka who was sacked as minister of the church on March 6, 2014. It was gathered that over N700 million was involved in the alleged fraud.
The former General Superintendent, who was found guilty by the church’s General Committee, was also suspended as a member of the church after the Executive Committee of the church had failed to resolve the allegations leveled against him by the Body of Ambassadors of the Kingdom and the National Consultative Assembly.
It was gathered that the panel sitting in Lagos and headed by the former Treasurer of the church, Rev. Dr. Deme Bot, is expected to submit its report to the General Committee in May 2014.
The panel, comprising a judge, estate managers, lawyers and retired Generals, it was learnt, is mandated to look into the 36 allegations leveled against the former General Superintendent, particularly the core issues of alleged arbitrary withdrawal of funds from the Assemblies of God Ministers’ Benefits Scheme (AGMBS), sole acquisition of properties worth N250 million in Germany and arbitrary sacking of staff in the Evangel University.
The problem between the sacked General Superintendent and members of his Executive began on September 24, 2013 when the body of Ambassadors and National Consultative Assembly wrote to all District Presbyteries, raising 36-point allegations against the former GS which include misappropriation of N200 million withdrawn from the Pension Fund for retired pastors without due process in contravention of the Pension Act; spending of N250 million to acquire a property in Germany without the approval of Executive Committee; unaccounted expenditure of N2million on equipment hire every time the general council activities such as Penile, Men’s, Pastors meetings were hosted at Okpoto, Ebonyi State; abuse of power which had led to exodus of members to other churches; autocratic behavior, among others.
Sources close to the church told said frantic efforts were made to resolve the matter at the Executive Committee level but “due to his arrogant nature, the former General Superintendent refused to appear before the Executive Committee to defend all these allegations.”