Police Rescue Pastor and Congregant Accused of Organ Theft Amidst Outrage in Makurdi, Benue State
In a tumultuous turn of events on Saturday night, the Benue State Police Command intervened to rescue a pastor and a member of his congregation who had been accused of engaging in organ theft by a group of enraged youths in Kanshio New Layout, Makurdi. The incident has since sparked a wave of controversy in the capital city of Benue State.
The targeted individuals were identified as Pastor Terna, affiliated with the Deeper Christian Life Ministry, commonly known as the Deeper Life Bible Church, and a church member named Jude Tyokula. The allegations of organ theft escalated to a public spectacle, with a video of the incident quickly circulating on social media platforms. In the disturbing footage, Tyokula was seen being stripped naked and subjected to physical assault while a self-proclaimed youth leader from the community interrogated him.
During the video, Tyokula made a startling confession, admitting to having harvested an individual’s organ within the community through the means of prayer. He also claimed that Pastor Terna, whom he had known since 2008, had engaged him for this unsettling task, offering a financial reward of one million naira.
In Tyokula’s own words, “He (Pastor Terna) is my pastor at Deeper Life Bible Church. I have known him since 2008 and have been worshipping in his church since 2012. I am an usher in the church. He asked me to do (harvest an organ) with the promise of one million naira.”
Notably, Tyokula mentioned that he worked as a security officer in a local bank. However, the Benue State Police Command swiftly responded to these allegations, refuting them entirely. According to Catherine Anene, the spokesperson for the state command, the accusations of organ theft had no factual basis.
In her statement, Anene explained, “Someone in the community raised the alarm, and some youths picked up the closest person and beat him up.” She continued to clarify that the accused individual, Tyokula, had decided to admit to the crime and implicate his pastor in an attempt to save himself from further harm, hoping that the pastor would come to his rescue.
Anene condemned the actions of the enraged youths, describing them as “inhuman and condemnable.” She emphasized that, according to the individuals involved, the incident stemmed from a mere alarm of genital organ theft, and the subsequent actions of the youths were both unfounded and brutal.
While the allegations of organ theft have caused significant unrest in the community, the Benue State Police Command has confirmed that no arrests have been made in connection with the incident. Furthermore, Anene noted that, historically, allegations of organ theft have not been substantiated in the region, further casting doubt on the authenticity of the accusations in this case.