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Christ Embassy sues Akwa Ibom State government over arrest, detention of pastor

Valentine Chinyem

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Uyo zonal headquarters of Believer’s Loveworld Inc aka Christ Embassy has instituted a legal action at a Federal High Court in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, against the Akwa Ibom State government over arrest and detention of one of its pastors, Pastor Emmanuel Effiong, and a videographer, Gabriel Ekpa, over alleged attack on Covid 19 Monitoring Team.

The frosty relationship between the church and the government deepened on Sunday when the COVID-19 monitoring team stormed the church and arrested the duo over alleged breaches of COVID-19 protocols.

It was gathered that the church, in a suit with registration number, FAC/UY/FHR/106/2020, is calling for the unconditional release of the duo.

Joined in the suit are the State Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev. Ndueso Ekwere and the Chairman, COVID-19 Guidelines Monitoring Committee, Mr. Enobong Uwah.

The church had denied claims that its members attacked and brutalized officials of the state government on Sunday.

A statement signed by Pastor Kelvin Atang and made available to newsmen accused the state government of “acting on falsehood”, noting that it was even the team that assaulted the church’s videographer.

The church decried that its pastor and videographer have been arrested and detained by the Police against their fundamental human rights of freedom of fair hearing by the authorities.

“This action is borne out of malice, hatred and calculated attempt to malign the Church for disassociating herself from the Christian Association of Nigeria.

“As a Church that respects the rule of law, we had envisaged this gang up and also took steps to seek protection of the law by approaching the Court”, the church said.

NAN