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FLASHBACK: How UK commission appointed interim managers for MFM, Christ Embassy

FLASHBACK: How UK commission appointed interim managers for MFM, Christ Embassy
August 19
17:09 2020

While some religious organisations are vehemently kicking against a section of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA), Nigerian churches have complied with similar laws overseas.

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The newly signed CAMA empowers the Corporate Affairs Commission to suspend the trustees of an association or a religious body and appoint an interim manager or managers to coordinate its affairs where it reasonably believes that there has been any misconduct or mismanagement, or where the affairs of the association are being run fraudulently or where it is necessary or desirable for the purpose of public interest.

David Oyedepo, the presiding bishop of Living Faith Church Worldwide, has been the most vocal about the section saying it was borne of out the government’s jealousy about the prosperity recorded by churches.

UK CHARITIES COMMISSION APPOINTED INTERIM MANAGER FOR MFM IN 2019

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In 2019, the UK Charities Commission appointed an interim manager to Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries International, a church founded by Daniel Olukoya.

At the time, the commission said it had concerns about the activities of the church including the repeated late filing of financial information, the governance of the charity and a failure in the administration which gives room for significant losses to occur.

“The commission is concerned over the trustees’ unwillingness to report serious incidents. The inquiry found two alleged incidents of fraud by former employees involving significant sums, both of which were not reported until a number of years after the frauds were discovered,” a notice by the commission read.

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“While a small percentage of the stolen funds have been recovered, the charity continues to suffer a significant loss. In addition to this, the commission has serious concerns over the charity’s chair of trustees and his personal handling of serious incidents.

“The commission also has questions over the governance of the charity. Three trustees are paid, which is in breach of the charity’s governing document and causes conflict when employment matters are discussed.”

At the time, the commission said the interim manager will review the church’s financial and governance processes, inspect some branches and how they handle serious incidents.

CHRIST EMBASSY ALSO GOT AN INTERIM MANAGER IN 2014

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As part of a five-year investigation, the commission also appointed an interim manager to take over the management and administration of Christ Embassy, a church owned by Chris Oyakhilome.

In December 2019, the commission indicted the church and its board of trustees of fraud.

The commission said it found serious misconduct and mismanagement in the church’s administration, inadequate recording of its decision-making processes and failure to comply with its grant-making policy.

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