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A popular pastor, Chris Oyakhilome, has berated Nigerian pastors that complied with the government’s ban on large gatherings because of coronavirus.

Mr Oyakhilome, who is the general overseer of Believers’ Love World, popularly known as Christ Embassy, said such leaders were not true Christians as they did not ask the government for time to pray and consult with their congregation.

Ironically, the cleric also complied with the government’s directive. He made the latest remarks in a telecast to his members.

He also said the government would soon begin to classify churches based on their compliance with directives on the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to him, their swift compliance with the directive is the reason Nigeria is yet to “see the hand of God.”

He also queried the motive for any planned vaccination against the pandemic.

“What they are using to test, do you know what it is? Do you know why it can show positive and negative? Do you know? A virus they told us they are still studying, why don’t they study it first? They are still studying it and they already have a vaccine that could be ready in July for a virus they are still studying,” the pastor said.

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 in Nigeria, bans have been placed on all social and religious gatherings in the country to curb the spread of the virus.

Mr Oyakhilome also said that the men of God that were invited by the government to discuss the closure of churches were not truly for Christ.

He said pastors should have asked for time to invite other pastors for prayer against the pandemic before consenting to closures of churches but prayer never came to their minds because they were not truly prayerful.

“As ministers of God, you are called for such a meeting and you couldn’t say give us a few days, then you call all the ministers and say this is what we just heard from a government representative, we need to pray.

“Then you would have seen the hand of God. But you were not thinking about the Father’s house. Do you know what it means to shut down the congregation of the lord? Do you know what it means? It never meant anything to you,” he said.

He added that pastors that have been sending warnings to their members to stay out of the church are not truly of Christ, reminding them that no amount of compensation they receive from the government can replace the praise and worship of God.

“Pastors and ministers have been sending strong warnings to others not to venture into the church because of the virus. That’s because Christ has never truly been your Lord, you’ve been the master of your life all these years. You’ve never truly known him.”

The controversial cleric also predicted that the government will soon create churches tagged “COVID-19 compliant” for people that have never been infected with the virus, saying those churches will never be the churches of Jesus Christ.

Mr Oyakhilome, who told his congregation he had a lot to tell them, said churches would soon be asked to set up testing centres because people would not be going for testing.

READ ALSO: Claims of 5G deployment ‘pure misinformation’ – NCC

Mr Oyakhilome made news headlines three weeks ago when he claimed the 5G network and not coronavirus was what was killing people.

In the video, Mr Oyakhilome also stated that the lockdown was to enable the federal government to install 5G in Abuja and Lagos.

He told his members in a sermon that 5G was part of the new world order where some figures of authority in the world were trying to build a religion, economy, and government for the entire universe.

But the three clerics, Poju Oyemade, Sam Adeyemi, and Matthew Ashimolowo, debunked Mr Oyakhilome’s claims at separate fora.

Mr Oyakhilome would later backtrack on his claim that the introduction of 5G network was responsible for the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr Oyakhilome, in a video shared on social media, stated that he was only opposed to 5G because of its perceived health risks and the seeming silence of authorised regulators to address its advantages and disadvantages.

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