In this piece, ARUKAINO UMUKORO and GBENGA ADENIJI examine the 2014 prophecies made by some Nigerian clergymen which did not come to pass
At the twilight and dawn of every year, it has become customary for Nigerian clerics to reel out prophesies on what to expect in the New Year. While few of these predictions manifest, many of them fail to see the light of the day.
Predictions are, however, not limited to Christian clerics. Members of other faiths and beliefs are known to have made predictions not only in Nigeria but all over the world.
Notable in Nigeria in the last two decades of the last century were Prof. Godspower Oyewole, a metaphysician, and Prof. Sam Akpabot.
While Oyewole gazed into his crystal ball to give earth-shaking predictions on a wide array of subjects including politics, economy and environment, Akpabot limited himself to sports. He was called the Oracle of Nigerian sports. The two gentlemen are now deceased.
Like in the past years, some of the prophecies made in 2014 by some Nigerian seers did not come to pass, causing many Nigerians to take some of these prophesies with a pinch of salt.
Aregbesola will be abducted — Olabayo
The founder of the Evangelical Church of Yahweh, Theophilus Olabayo, predicted late 2013 that Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola risked being kidnapped in the New Year of 2014.
Olabayo, who prophesied in his 2014 Book of Predictions that a South-West governor would be kidnapped, told a national newspaper (not THE PUNCH) during an interview to expatiate on the predictions that the governor could also be killed.
He said, “Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State has to be watchful so that they will not kidnap and kill him in the New Year. He has to be very careful so that he can survive the year.” However, the governor was not killed in the year and no attempt to kidnap him was recorded.
2014, Nigeria’s year of economic boom — Olusegun
For Akiode Olusegun who is the General Overseer of the Ogun State-based Divine Ministries International, 2014 would be a year of economic surplus for Nigeria. He had specifically noted among other predictions that “2014 is a year of economic growth for Nigeria.’’ It was number 24 of the 33 predictions made by the pastor for the year.
Last year was, however, everything but financially buoyant for Nigeria. The decline in the price of crude oil affected the government to the extent that the Minister of Finance and the Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, outlined government’s austerity measures aimed at cushioning the impact of the oil slump on the economy.
Olusegun further said in number 30 of the prediction outline that, “Some notable people will commit suicide by drinking poison to escape hammer from government.’’ Rather than this, Nigerians only witnessed a higher level of impunity from individuals in government circles.
Presidential ticket will split APC — Suleiman
Apostle Johnson Suleiman, who is the founder and Senior Pastor of Omega Fire Ministries Worldwide, was also among the clerics who predicted major occurrences in 2014. He had said the contest for the presidential ticket to select the individual who would be the standard-bearer of the All Progressives Congress for next month’s election would split the party. However, the opposition political party managed the primary election so well that the eventual winner and former Head of State, Muhammadu Buhari, was congratulated by fellow opponents.
Buhari contested the primary election against Kano State Governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, former Vice-President, Atiku Abubakar, Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha and the Publisher, Leadership Newspapers, Sam Nda-Isaiah.
Suleiman also said, “I saw a colonel in the military trying to stage a coup but he will fail.’’ Such a development did not happen in 2014.
Another prophecy of his that, “I see CBN printing high denomination naira notes this year,’’ also never materialised in 2014.
Chibok girls will return unhurt — T.B Joshua
Popular Pastor Temitope Joshua, the General Overseer of the Synagogue Church of All Nations with headquarters in Lagos is one cleric who regales his followers with predictions which they claim come to pass.
In a two-minute, 55 seconds video clip on tbjoshuawatch, TB Joshua, as he is popularly called, said, “Unless I’m not called by God, I place my career and calling on the line that these 200 schoolchildren and girls that were kidnapped have to be released immediately, unharmed and unhurt.” The video quoted Joshua as saying this on May 3, 2014.
More than seven months after, the girls have yet to be released. The few who reportedly escaped had told the world of the sufferings and assaults they underwent in the hands of Boko Haram insurgents.
‘Missing Malaysian plane ‘ll be found’
Joshua was also said to have declared to his congregation on March 15, 2014 that the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 would be found. In the same video clip, with “SCOAN Live Prophetic Service” on its scroll bar, Joshua said, “There is a big controversy going on in the world about the missing Malaysian plane. They don’t know where the plane is. I’m the only minister, if not only me, that God used to speak about this issue. But the whole thing is coming to an end. The whole thing has come to an end, in the sense that they would discover the plane, they would discover the particles, everything would end any moment from now. So, this coming week, we are not going to be talking about it again, rather the families concerned would know their fate.”
The Malaysian plane is yet to be found.
‘Write off Ebola Virus Disease’
In another video clip reportedly recorded in August 2014, the synagogue preacher declared that Ebola would be a ‘write-off’. He said, “People of Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea are released. The whole thing is (a) write-off. The life we have been living before now, we are back to that (sic).”
While Nigeria has since been declared Ebola-free, the dreaded disease has killed over 8,000 people and infected over 20,000 mainly in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. And it is still raging.
‘There will be terror attack in UK’
According to tbjoshuawatch, “On August 29, 2014, the UK’s Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre changed the UK threat level from international terrorism from substantial to severe. Two days later, Joshua predicted a terror attack in the UK sometime between the middle and end of September.”
No terror attack was launched on the UK in the said year.
Nigeria will do well in Brazil — Olubode
Prophet Michael Olubode of the Celestial Church of Christ is another seer who reels out predictions to Nigerians at the twilight of every year, giving them a glimpse into the coming year.
Writing on his website, Olubode said, “Nigeria will perform exceedingly well in this year’s World Cup but the Super Eagles will not win the cup. This is how the breakdown of how the game will look like: The Iranian team will either draw with Nigeria or place the Super Eagles in a qualifying state on the game to be played on June 16, 2014. Then, Nigeria will record impressive victory against Bosnia and Herzegovina on June 21 and another victory against the Argentina team on June 25.”
The 2014 World Cup outing has been the worst for Nigeria. Nigeria crashed out after losing 0-2 to France in the second round. Although they played a goalless draw with Iran and won only one match, a 1-0 win against Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Eagles lost 3-2 to Argentina in the group stages.
‘Nigerian will win world class beauty peagent’
Olubode also said, “It has been revealed to me that in the latest news of BBC and CNN, Nigeria will once again be announced as the winner of one of the world class beauty contests this year. I advise stakeholders and lovers of Nigeria to pray well that this great expectation will come to pass. Many nations will envy and respect Nigeria for this.” This did not happen.
‘Buhari, Atiku will be abducted’
“I see Atiku Abubakar, the former Vice-President under Obasanjo, taken captive with the unfortunate politicians to suffer and possibly die over the coming crisis in the country. He will, however, be saved miraculously from the pangs of death and torture. The crisis will not spare the ex-head of State, Muhammadu Buhari. He will be taken with some Nigerian politicians this year at his residence while dinning and winning and enjoying himself with his guests,” Olubode also said.
This also did not come to pass. Neither Abubakar nor Buhari was attacked or kidnapped.
Similarly, Olubode said, a country that is least expected will win the World Cup.
This too did not come to pass as Germany who had earlier won the tournament three times lifted the coveted trophy for the fourth time in Brazil.
US will overrun Syria — Ayodele
Founder of INRI Evangelical Spiritual Church, Oke-Afa, Isolo, Lagos, Primate Babatunde Elijah Ayodele is also renowned for his prophecies. He said about 2014:
“President Jonathan needs to be prayerful as there are plans by the international community to embarrass his government. America will take over Syria no matter what. The President of Syria may be killed if he is not careful, as many nations would rise against him. The Emir of Qatar will be troubled by reforms.”
Syria is still in the throes of a bloody civil war, while some parts of it have been overrun by the terrorist group, ISIS. The US has yet to take over the country. Also, the President of Syria is very much alive, while Qatar has remained trouble-free.
Akpabio will lose office — Ituen
Founder and Spiritual Leader of CDM-Christ Deliverance Ministries Inc. Lagos, Prophet Ekong Ituen prophesied that Akwa Ibom State would have a change of government in the outgone year.
He said, “Akwa Ibom State will soon have a change of government through the court of law as earlier predicted. I am urging the governor to put his office and documents in order in preparation for a new government. I advise the good people of my state to keep their faith alive and watch out God in action. It may take a little but I am confident because it is obvious in the spirit that your governor will not complete his tenure in office. Governor Godswill Akpabio should put his office and documents in order in preparation for a new governor.” This was never so. Up till now Akpabio still holds sway as the governor of the state.
Mr. Bola Ilori, a public commentator, told SUNDAY PUNCH that some clergy men often speak in parables.
He said, “There are some men of God who instead of being blunt couch their predictions in parables hence they are neither here nor there. Some people have, however, labelled these people as being smart in their predictions.
“One which came to mind is the one given by Oyewole before the 1983 general elections. He was asked who would become Nigeria’s next president. He told his interviewers that the name of the winner is in the Old Testament of the Holy Bible. The supporters of Chief Obafemi Awolowo were quick to jump to conclusion that it was Awolowo, as his Christian name was Jeremiah. When the results were released, Shehu Shagari won. When accused of making a wrong prediction, Oyewole disagreed. He told them that the name Shamgar was in the Bible stating the book, chapter and verse.”
Ayodele, also explained that misconceptions occurred because of people’s poor knowledge about prophesy.
He said, “Nigerians don’t understand when a man of God speaks. We should not blame many men of God who said things in the past that did not come to pass. Everything is in the hands of God. He is the one who has the final say about everything that happens.”
Similarly, Olubode, while responding to one of the persons who faulted some of his prophecies posted online that, “I just want you to know that I am not a prophet appointed to compete for a medal. I am not also expected to deliver accurate prophecy all the time, but all these imperfection has (sic) not also disqualified me from being a prophet of God. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. Many are of the view that a prophet must be perfect in his vision all the time, this is not so.”
Speaking on the issue, Director of Studies, United Bible University, Lagos, Prof. Kunle Macaulay, described clergymen making predictions as uninformed. He added that the era of prophecy had long gone.
He said, “Our people do not know that the ministry of prophets has ended. We are now in the ministry of the Holy Spirit. The beginning of prophecy was when the elders of Israel demanded for a king to judge them (1 Samuel 8). Those who still prophesy do not have the required spiritual knowledge. The prophecies they are making will not come to pass once they are not from God.’’
Macaulay, who likened predictions to guesswork and psychology, noted that whatever did not emanate from God would not come to pass.
“The work of God is progressive and as far as I am concerned, one will know when a prophecy is not from God,” he added. Copyright PUNCH.