Christ Embassy ‘Covidiots’ Granted Bail

Four persons who defied COVID-19 restrictions during a Christ Embassy event have been granted bail.

The four include three members of the Christ Embassy Church and a manager of the Fantasy Dome at the La Trade Fair Centre.

The accused persons are Alex Asomani, Wilson Delali Agyeman, Kumi Nutifafa and Edmond Dapaah.

They have been charged with three counts of failing to comply with COVID-19 restrictions at the event which hosted over 1000 participants.

The Christ Embassy Church, noted for its COVID-19 conspiracies, held a service dubbed  “Pneumatic Night”, with large crowds in attendance on Friday, April 30, 2021.

The court slapped the four accused persons GHC80,000 each with two sureties, each earning not less than GHC1,400 and must either be a public or civil servant or a staff of the Controller and Accountant General’s Department.

However, the fourth accused does not suffer a cap on the earnings of the sureties to be presented.

Bail application

In his bail application, counsel for the accused persons argued that their clients were ready to appear before court at all times till the final determination of the case.

Counsel for Dapaah, Mr Jerry Avenorgbo argued that his client was ready to assist the police in its investigations.

“We have sureties with sufficient means in this honourable court to sign for us and we will appear on this court on any date to ensure the effective determination of this case,” Mr Avenorgbo said.

The prosecution on the other hand did not oppose the bail application.

The court then issued a stern warning to the accused persons that should the accused persons fail to appear before the court for trial, it will not hesitate to issue a bench warrant for their arrest.

Why the four are in court

The Ghana Police Service served notice to arrest and prosecute culpable Christ Embassy leaders who organised a mammoth crusade in breach of COVID-19 protocols.

The church, noted for its COVID-19 conspiracies, held a service dubbed  “Pneumatic Night”, with large crowds in attendance on Friday, April 30, 2021.

Churches are permitted to hold services up to two hours under laid down COVID-19 protocols, including social distancing, wearing masks, handwashing and provision of hand sanitisers.

But these were absent as large crowds gathered at the Fantasy Dome at the Trade Fair Centre in Accra.

“Police have since Sunday morning locked up the Fantasy Dome and have started questioning leaders of the Church and Management of the Fantasy Dome about the event,” the police said in the statement, adding “any person found culpable will be arrested and duly prosecuted.”

Trending videos of the alleged gathering, dubbed “Pneumatic Night”, showed a non-mask-wearing mass crowd, screaming, chanting and dancing to the “evangelism” of non-mask-wearing leaders.

According to the police, the event puts the entire country at a high risk of COVID-19 spread at a time the country is working against a third wave of the virus amidst the challenges in getting jabs for the second phase of the COVID-19 vaccination exercise.

Christ Embassy fined £125,000

Founded by Lagos-based megachurch pastor Christian Oyakhilome, UK regulator, Ofcom fined the church £125,000 in March 2021.

The LoveWorld Television Ministry of the church was found aired “inaccurate and potentially harmful claims about coronavirus”.

Loveworld Television Network was found to have made the violation back in January after a 29-hour show titled The Global Day of Prayer featured sermons with “potentially harmful” claims about Covid-19 – including that the virus was “planned” and created by the “deep state”, and vaccines were a “sinister” means of administering “nanochips” to control people.

This was the second time they had an encounter with the law as they had also made false claims linking coronavirus to 5G technology in April 2020.

The accused persons are to reappear in court on May 24, 2021.

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