Defamation: Church member arrests pastor, petitions police in Ughelli

A member of Faith Baptist Church Otokutu-Owevwe, Agbarha-Otor in Ughelli, Mrs. Uruemu Sylvester Enajeme, is seeking justice after her Pastor, Gideon Omowhare Okumah, excommunicated her from the church for alleged adultery, saying she is innocent and was not given a chance to clear herself of the allegations.

Her lawyer, Ayowe Augustine, has since written a petition to the Ughelli Area Command that led to the arrest of the pastor who was on Tuesday released on bail.

According to the petition, Mrs. Enajeme’s problems started after she condemned the pastor of embezzling offerings donated by members, adding that the cleric is supposed to pay the money into the church account.


The actions of the offended pastor thus resulted in her resignation as the church’s financial secretary.

But, the pastor who felt offended, later with the help of Mr Sylvester (husband of Mrs. Uruemu Sylvester Enajeme) said she was involved in adultery with one Mr Ikemefuna Igwe.

She was then suspended from the church, an act which Mrs. Enajeme beloved was hasty and done without any inputs from any leaders in the church.

The petition that requested for police investigation, reads: “We write in respect of the above mentioned matters as solicitor to MRS. URUEMU SYLVESTER ENAJEME who we shall hereinafter simply call our client.

  1. BACKGROUND FACTS: Our client is a hardworking house wife who carries on the business of selling provision until recently when she converted her trade to dealing on building materials at Otukutu- Owevwe, Agbarha- Otor.
  2. Our client is a Christian who worships God at Faith Baptist Church Otokutu-Owevwe, Agbarha-Otor in Ughelli North Local Government Area, Delta State of Nigeria.
  3. Mr. Gideon Omowhare Okumah is the pastor of Faith Baptist Church where our client worships God.
  4. Our Client’s torment in the hands of Pastor Gideon Omowhare Okumah started when she pointed out to him: that proceeds of seed sowing offering which the Pastor is collecting for himself is Church money which is supposed to be paid into Church account. The violent reaction of Pastor Gideon to our client’s harmless view caused our client to resign her position as the Church financial secretary. Despite our client’s voluntary resignation to ensure peace and harmony, the reed has been broken and there is no more love lost between Pastor and flock ( that is, our client).
  5. Mr Gideon Omowhare Okumah alleged that he had report from Mr. Sylvester, the husband of our client that our client committed adultery with one Mr Ikemefuna Igwe. The matter was referred by the Pastor, Mr Gideon Omowhare Okumah to the executive Committee of the Church where he again is chairman for deliberation.
  6. The Executive Committee presided over by the Pastor sat on the matter once on Wednesday 7th June, 2023 and received that Mr Ikemefuna Igwe who is being alleged of committing the adultery with Mrs. Uruemu Sylvester Enajeme be invalid for cogent and compelling fact finding to either establish or disregard the adultery.
  7. Surprisingly and shockingly on 14/06/2023 or there about, before the executive Committee could meet to deliberate and conclude on the matter, Pastor Gideon Omowhare Okumah unilaterally without any facts to establish the alleged offence of adultery announced to members of the church his decision to suspend and excommunicate our client from attending the church and as well from having any association, relationship or discussion with any member of the church forthwith. With the said announcement above, Pastor Gideon Omowhare Okumah slandered our client, assassinated her character as well as denied her the freedom of worship and association guaranteed by the 1999 constitution as amended.
  8. Our client has lost her self esteem and reputation in the eyes of reasonable men and women especially her business associates who now see her as a depraved personality lacking morals and scruples.
  9. The conduct of Pastor Gideon Omowhare Okumah is capable of causing breakdown of law and order should our client resort to self- help. But our client, young peaceful and law abiding citizen had chosen to ventilate her grievance using legal parameters by consulting us to write to your well esteemed office to thoroughly investigate this crime of slander, character assassination and denial of freedom of worship and association as stated in the sordid, morbid and miserable facts.

Thanking you In anticipation of your thorough and urgent investigation.”

Meanwhile, a church member who spoke to us under conditions of anonymity, said the pastor always parades himself as a prophet who describes himself as AKA oil in my head money in my hand.

The said member said that since Gideon Okumah was inducted as the pastor of the church, the church lost her love, unity and has not known peace and going from one problem to another, listing letter of call to mandatory signatory to constitution as some.of.the church’s issues.

The member continued: “He even boasted to the Association’s secretary who is a member of the church that in three months time something mysterious or bad will happen to him and his family unless he is not called by God because they had little misunderstanding.”

According to another source, the church secretary and other principal officers of the church have abandoned their roles and responsibilities and are at the verge of leaving the church.

They said if the pastor lackadaisical attitude toward the Executive Committee decisions and unguided utterances are not checked they will serve as open invitations for litigation.

Our source said “he had hired and recruited some wolf in sheep clothing from the church and outside who play his script and hold meetings and want to force their decisions on the church through craftness and violence with a slogan “the violence take it by force.”

Attempts to speak with the pastor proved abortive at the time of publishing this report.

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