A Nigerian Resident Pastor of the Omega Fire Ministries International in Lusaka, Pastor Augustine Oso Ebosele has been given 48 hours to leave the country after his 4 year permit came to an end amid allegations of ‘divisive’ conduct.
Ebosele whose church is headquartered in Auchi, Edo State, Nigeria had been given an extension of 4 months to wind up his affairs by immigration authorities after his permit expired.
The government through the Ministry of Home Affairs in consultation with the Ministry of National Guidance and Religious Affairs have refused to extend the permit after the 4 month extension lapsed.
This is according to a statement issued today by Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services who is also Chief government spokesperson Kampamba Mulenga.
This is fresh from allegations against the government since dismissed as ‘baseless’ emanating from Apostle Suleman Johnson the Senior Pastor and General Overseer of Omega Fire Ministries International, who said Zambia is one of the nations in the world that deports Nigerians through ‘Zambianisation’ to take over their successful ‘massive’ investments.
Suleman who appeared in a recent videoaccused the Zambian authorities of targeting Nigerian owned businesses in Zambia for indigenous Zambians to ‘take-over’.
He alleged that Nigerian churches that are growing including his own with branches in Chingola, Ndola and Livingstone are being targeted to remove pastors sent by him.
Suleman said anyone who fought his pastors was fighting him and that he would not bow to threats. In a veiled threat to the authorities he said “you fight me, you wait for the results. There will be problems.”
The controversial Apostle was recently embroiled in a controversy after accusations by a Canadian based singer of Nigerian origin Stephanie Otobo of having an affair with her, impregnating her and later attempting to kill her during a year-long sexual frolic that saw the Apostle flying her all over the world for sex.
The government says the conduct of Pastor Ebosele has divided the Omega Fire Ministries into two parties. The Minister said the government feared that with the Pastor’s continued stay in the country, the acrimony in Omega Fire Ministries could result into the breakdown of law and order.
She said Pastor Obesele was given 48 hours to leave the country, in accordance with the Immigration and Deportation Act number 18 0f 2010.
Ms. Mulenga also said contrary to speculations, the Government has not closed Omega Fire Ministries and is not against Nigerian Pastors.
She said Omega Fire Ministries Headquarters in Nigeria is free to send a senior pastor to come and help reconcile the membership in Lusaka.
Ms. Mulenga has called on Omega Fire Ministries members to avoid speculation and remain calm as matters are being dealt with the Church membership.