$9.3m arms deal scandal: Oritsejafor breaks silence, says I have no hand in it

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The President of the Christian Association of
Nigeria, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, yesterday broke
his silence over the $9.3m arms deal scandal in
which his private jet was used to carry the huge
sum of money out of Nigeria to South Africa.
Speaking at the National Executive Council
meeting of CAN at the National Christian Center
in Abuja, Pastor Oritsejafor absolved himself of
any wrong doing, saying he would never do
anything that would tarnish the image of Jesus
Christ
“I wish to assure you that I will not do
anything to tarnish the image of Jesus
Christ or compromise the divine standard
of the church. As you are all aware, the
media has been awashed in the past few
days about an unfortunate incident
involving the movement of funds from
Nigeria to South Africa. In the unfortunate
news reports, attempts have been made to
link me directly with the transaction. So far,
I have refrained from making any direct
public response pending the time that I
would have briefed the leaders of the
church and explained my position on the
issues to them.
I believe that the primary institution that I
owe any explanation to is the church. At
the risk of being seen to be defending
myself, I wish to confirm to the
distinguished leaders of the church that the
Bombardier Challenger 601 aircraft in
question is mine. The aircraft was
presented to me as a gift by members of
our congregation and ministry partners
worldwide at my 40th anniversary of my
call into the ministry. May I be permitted to
stress that the aircraft was not given to me
by the President of Nigeria, neither was it a
settlement for any political favour or
patronage. With the benefit of hindsight, the
President of the country was a guest in our
church during the anniversary celebration
when the jet was presented to me. This has
construed an implication that it was a gift
from the President of the country. The
President of Nigeria has nothing to do with
the gift of the aircraft. By the way, I still
wonder why all those saying this cannot
come out to show proof so that the matter
can be put to rest once and for all. Let me
say that this might be an issue of the court
in the near future ”he said
He said he was also shocked and distressed at
finding out what the private jet which he leased
to the company managing it used it for, adding
that there is a war being waged against the
church in Nigeria
“Based on this, I leased the aircraft on
August 2, 2014, to a company to run it. It
was the lease that entered into an
agreement with the people who carried out
the transfer of funds. Having leased the
aircraft to the Green Coast Produce
Company Limited, any transaction
undertaken with the aircraft can no longer
be attached to me. Inasmuch as I am
shocked and distressed by the incident, I
wish to appeal to Christians in Nigeria to
remember that a war has been waged
against the Nigerian church. This war is
being fought on many fronts and this
unfortunate incident is another dimension in
the assault against the church.” He said
He went further to state that;
“The media hype and the deliberate
distortion of information that followed it
confirmed that forces that desperately
desire to cause division and disunity in the
church are at work. Even the devil knows
that a house that is divided cannot
stand. As Christians, we need unity in the
church now more than ever. We are
witnessing inhuman attacks by religious
extremists against Christians in the
northern part of the country, while christian
infrastructure is being destroyed in
hundreds. If we permit the enemy divide us,
our chances of corporate survival shall be
severely threatened. Distinguished leaders
of the church, please permit me to state
clearly before God and before all of you
here present today, that I am not a party to
the movement of $9.3m from Nigeria to
South Africa to purchase arms and
ammunition. I am not part of the deal. I
know nothing about it.” he said

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