Reign in fake preachers

19 November 2020 | Opinion

Namibians have their eyes glued on the drama unfolding in South Africa -Malawian preacher Shepherd Bushiri escaped the country amid a looming trial against him.

In Namibia, charismatic preacher Jackson Babi has been behind bars for alleged poaching and offering a bribe to an officer of the law.

Another self-proclaimed preacher, Kaetanus ‘Dr Atomic Bomb’ Shilimela, is also in jail at Walvis Bay where he allegedly conned his faithful followers of their hard-earned dollars.

The mushrooming of churches in Namibia has reached scary proportions.

Each street corner has a conman masquerading as a preacher of prophesies and salvation, and the gullible worshippers gobble this nonsense up hook, line and sinker.

Government has done little to protect the desperate members of community who, when the state fails to deliver on its promises, turn to conmen who promise fortune, healing and forgiveness.

The law allows recognition of any religious group as a voluntary association, without the need to register with the government. Every botsotso in Katutura has taken advantage of this sloppy law to con naive followers in the name of Jesus of Nazareth.

Many of these so-called churches have even acquired large tracts of land from city fathers from where they conduct their unhallowed acts under the guise of being heaven-sent.

While freedom of religion must remain jealously protected, the grand-scale thievery by these wannabe preachers must be reined in – quickly - to protect the masses.

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