Posted by News Express | 11 November 2012 | 5,155 times
The news of the acquisition of a private jet by yet another pastor in impoverished Nigeria has sparked outrage, with many condemning the development as insensitive and unjustifiable.
Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor (see photo), founder and leader of The Word of Life Bible Church based in the oil city of Warri, Delta State, was yesterday presented with a private jet as his birthday gift by his flock. A fiery Pentecostal, Oritsejafor is President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and had no private jet whereas some other (Pentecostal) pastors have since bought theirs – one of them even acquiring four.
However, Oritsejafor’s jet arrived at a time when Nigerians, many of whom cannot afford a decent meal a day, were still in a bad mood over the acquisition of private jets by three state governors. As reported by News Express on Nov. 4, Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State in June last year acquired an aircraft worth $45 million (about N7 billion) while Governor Rotimi Amaechi of neighbouring Rivers State beat that record by buying a Bombardier Global 5000 at a cost of $45.7 million (about N7.4 billion), on October 7 this year. Another governor Danbaba Suntai of Taraba State, is presently battling for life in a German hospital after narrowly escaping death when a private jet personally flown by him crashed near Yola Airport on October 25. The governor acquired two private jets both reportedly costing about a combined $5 million (about N775 million).
Nigerians were still trying to come to terms with all this when Oritsejafor’s private jet was unveiled at a ceremony graced by church members and invited dignitaries that included President Goodluck Jonathan, Delta State Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan, and an international preacher, Dr. Mike Murdock. The ceremony was organised to mark celebrating Oritsejafor’s birthday and his 40th anniversary on the pulpit.
Nigerians have however reacted angrily to the development. Below are some of the comments:
Uche Ezechukwu: Our own CAN president , Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, has just got his own private jet for his birthday. The claim is that it was donated by the members of his flock, most of who cannot afford two square meals a day and had flocked to him for miracles. It doesn’t now matter that Christ did not own even a donkey. Until the government gathers the courage to tax these ‘men and women of God’ who wallow in profligacy but put nothing back to the society, they will lead us to trouble, not heaven. Oritsejafor runs a one or two-branch church in Warri and that’s why he needs a jet. Where is he going with it? Vanity of vanity...Do pastors read the Bible anymore?
Tope Bentop-Igibielusowonnigbo Adeboboye: Another pastor, another private jet! So you’re telling me that members of his church, some of who are wallowing in penury and can afford neither a bike nor a good meal, bought a plane for our dear papa, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor? Somebody shout Hallelujah!
Uche Chukwu: These men, I would rather call them PASTORAL CHEATS AND THIEVES! They exploit people’s ignorance and feed on their gullibility. I may not know much about God but I certainly know from His nature HE ABHORS DECEPTION in whatever guise!!! Many native doctors, 419ners, drug peddlers, mafias etc have simply taken new name – Pastor.
Morakinyo Bayode: In this age and time when the flock are starving? These people lack a conscience and will certainly answer for their greed and gluttony.
Chidinma Onwurah: Jesus wasn’t a poor man. Even in death his clothes on the cross of Calvary was taken based on the value of it, he also rode on an expensive donkey when he went for feast. Christ never gave us an example not to accept expensive gift. He accepted the alabaster expensive oil. His disciples were furious with Mary.
Uche Echi: In addition, planes cost a lot to maintain and fuel. Most of the pilots and maintenance men and women are foreigners who get paid a lot of money. These fake pastors steal the poor people's money in an extreme manner that is unheard of. I am amazed at person who contribute for his/her church to build a university and yet their children are unable to attend the same institution because it’s way out of their budget.
Lobo Gboyega Aganun: Nigeria people still av long way to go and learn, about church and pastor......
Uche Chukwu: The money for that jet will be able to make 100 poor and hope less youths in his church self sufficient, instead of recommending to them ‘dosage’ of prayers and fasting for miracle. God knows I am not against him as I will soon leave for Church. I am just against this stupidity. How many pastors have you heard go in private jets in America or do you think they can’t afford it if they behave like their counterparts in Nigeria? Those who are pastors in America are few and great, except the same Nigerians that have also gone to make money from other Nigerians in America. Pastors that buy JETS while people wallow in poverty are not serving God. They are cheats!!!
Anyi Igbanda: Men of God? Or men of worldly riches?
Toyin Babarinsa: Halleluya!!! Lord have mercy upon the flock and the shepherd or what shall we say? Pay ur tithe, offering, seed, etc.
Vivian Nicholas: Hmmmmmm! I am short of words! A lot are happening nowadays. As for me, church is nothing but a commercial venture and should be treated as such. In fact, am planning to own one. Did I see you wink?
Chidi Nwatu: It is now fashion statement to own a private jet in Nigeria and if you’re one of the so called man of God the type you buy shows your level but let us remember that the same illness has now spread to our so called state governors and business moguls too and it is rolling down like a wildfire.
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