Former members of the Synagogue Church of all Nation have accused the founder of the church, Late Temitope Balogun Joshua of rape, torture and forced abortion, according to latest report released by BBC.
They said for over 20 years, Pastor TB Joshua had subjected them to abuse and torture.
According to the BBC, it investigated the famous Nigerian televangelist who in his lifetime built a huge global followers for two years. TB Joshua, who died in 2021, in his Lagos-based church, Synagogue Church of all Nations saw members from around the world who came to his internationally televised ‘miracles,’ ‘healing’ and ‘deliverance’ sessions through its Emmanuel TV.
Now, dozens of ex-Synagogue Church of all Nations members called the church “a cult” and accused Joshua of rape and forced abortions, “including instances of child abuse and people being whipped and chained,” the BBC reports.
The ex-members said that the incidents happened in a compound in Lagos.
Numerous women said in the 3-part documentary that they were sexually assaulted by Joshua and raped for years inside the compound. Some members also claimed that they went through multiple forced abortions inside the church after Joshua raped them. One of the women said she had five terminations.
A British woman, called Rae, said that she left her degree at Brighton University in 2002 after she was recruited by the church. “We all thought we were in heaven, but we were in hell, and in hell, terrible things happen,” she told the BBC.
Then she said she was sexually assaulted by Joshua and, at some point for two years, was subjected to a form of solitary confinement. She was only 21 years old at the time.
The BBC said it spoke to more than 25 former “disciples” from the UK, Nigeria, the US, South Africa, Ghana, Namibia and Germany for the documentary.
The BBC also reports that Joshua courted white members who came to Nigeria for his “healings” specifically, to grow the church internationally and attract huge funding from pilgrims.
“Former insiders estimate Joshua made tens of millions of dollars from pilgrims and other money streams – fundraising, video sales, and stadium appearances abroad. He rose from poverty to become one of Africa’s richest pastors,” the BBC reports.
A highly religious environment, many Nigerian televangelists and famous pastors have been accused of rape and abuse by ex-members in the past. But little has come out of it as the pastors continue their careers and attract even new followers.
“Making unfounded allegations against Prophet TB Joshua is not a new occurrence… None of the allegations was ever substantiated,” the church said of the allegations.