Celestial Church of Christ Worldwide has condemned one of its pastors, Prophet Francis Taiwo, for chaining and starving his nine-year-old son for weeks.
The Board of Trustees of the church, in a statement by its Secretary, Prof. Bola Akinterinwa, described Taiwo’s action as shameful and totally unacceptable and in contrast with the values of the church.
“Let it be known that the Celestial Church of Christ does not condone child abuse and violence of any form,” the statement read in part. We recognise and place a high value on our youths and children as we do acknowledge them as the salt of the earth and vital part of the future of any given stratum of society, organisation, church or nation.”
Pastor Francis Taiwo had been arrested on Sunday for chaining and starving his nine-year-old son, Korede, for over a month in a room inside the Key of Joy Celestial Church of Christ, Ajibawo, in Ado Odo/Ota Local Government Area of the state.
The boy had been rescued on Friday by a team of the police operatives and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, who were informed of the boy’s plight by neighbours.
According to the CCC Board of Trustees, the incident has angered the public and caused the church to receive undeserved criticism as the pastor’s action contradicted its beliefs.
“The fact that the said Prophet Francis Taiwo was arrested by the Police with the help of his church members clearly lends credence to the fact that our church abhors child abuse, domestic violence and inhumanity in whatever form,” it said.
The church, which commended the police and NSCDC for responding promptly to the complaints of the neighbours and rescuing the boy, gave the assurance that it was investigating the matter.