A 45-year-old man, Osayande Ekhator, has died during a deliverance service at a Pentecostal church at Uselu Quarters in Egor Local Government Area of Edo State.
The victim’s family had taken him to the Holy Ghost Deliverance Centre, also called Hope Ministry, for spiritual cleansing when the incident occurred.
Relations alleged that the victim was beaten to death, adding that they saw his body with bloodstains.
The father of the deceased, Pa Ekhator, told reporters that he suspected that the deliverance went wrong when his son was thrown to the ground, with his hands and legs tied.
He said: “They forced him and tied him up, as usual, and threw him down. From there, they carried a bucket of water and poured it on his body.
“The mother asked why. They said that was what they usually did; that after struggling, they wanted him to have some rest. After about five minutes, she came out crying that Osayande was dead.”
A sister of the victim, who spoke in confidence, alleged that the victim was “beaten to death”.
She said the “killers” also planned to deposit his remains at a mortuary.
“They beat him to death. They removed his clothes, bathed him and clothed him.
A resident, who pleaded anonymity, said there were bloodstains on the head of the deceased.
“I think he was hit on the head. I saw blood on his head when his body was placed in a vehicle,” the resident said.
Resident Pastor, Mrs. Isoken Ekundaye, denied the allegations.
The cleric said several “lunatics” had been healed in the church.
She said: “We don’t kill here; we don’t beat here. If they bring insane people, we heal them.”
Some youths invaded the church and destroyed its property.
Police spokesman Stephen Onwochei, a Deputy Superintendent (DSP), said the pastor had been arrested and the case transferred to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) for investigation.
Source: The Nation