From the Nigerian Voice:
The President and founder of the Liberty Gospel Foundation Church, Lady Apostle Helen Ukpabio says she has indefinitely cancelled her scheduled visits to the USA which where billed for March and May this year.
Speaking through her attorney, Victor Ukutt, Esq., the Pentecostal Pastor and Nollywood actress, who has her church branches spread all over Africa, said her decision to cancel her trip was based on the series of death threat she received from organisations like Stepping Stones Nigeria a based in the United Kingdom which claimed to work as a charity to protect witch children in Nigeria.
Ukpabio, as I’ve blogged a number of times, is internationally notorious as a proponent of the belief – not found anywhere in the Bible – that personal misfortune can be caused by child witches, and that children identified as witches require “deliverance”. While Ukpabio asserts that she cures children afflicted in this way through a harmless ceremony, the doctrine has caused great harm to children and families.
Ukpabio featured in a British newspaper report at the end of 2007, and the plight of “witch children” in Nigeria so was brought to widespread attention by Gary Foxcroft in a documentary broadcast a year later. Foxcroft, who runs Stepping Stones, has been a target of abuse and lurid accusations ever since, and a conference on the subject organised in Nigeria by Leo Igwe was attacked by members of Ukpabio’s church. I’ve also experienced how Ukpabio operates – while my blogging on the subject can hardly be compared to Gary and Leo’s front-line efforts, I feature alongside them on an abusive website registered to Ukpabio’s webmaster (a certain Gabriel Egba, who runs a company called Gaboeski – he’s personally supportive of Ukpabio, having forwarded a message I sent to him on to the church).
The most obvious question now concerns the supposed “death threats”. It should be noted that Ukutt does not quote or provide any evidence of these threats, nor does he give any indication of having spoken with police about them. Now, why might that be?
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