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REVEALED: Six ways TB Joshua faked miracles

 

A BBC Africa Eye report has insisted that the late Nigerian
televangelist, TB Joshua faked miracles within his Synagogue Church of All
Nations.

 

BBC in the report stated that it had uncovered a web of
deceptive practices allegedly employed by the late Nigerian televangelist to
fabricate miracles and listed six ways the late church leader allegedly faked
miracles

 

It noted that the investigation, which draws insights from
more than 25 insiders across various countries, sheds light on a series of
deceptive tactics employed within SCOAN.

 

The investigation, which was published on BBC Eye Website on
Sunday, alleged that Joshua, who passed away in 2021 at the age of 57, was a
fraud.

 

It details six ways through which TB Joshua allegedly
deceived worshippers, noting that these discoveries came from those who worked
with the late church leader.

 

In 2004, Nigeria’s broadcast regulator prohibited the airing
of pastors’ supposed miracles on live terrestrial TV, leading Joshua to launch
Emmanuel TV on satellite and later online.

 

His global television and social media network became one of
the world’s most successful Christian platforms, broadcasting to millions
across Europe, the Americas, South East Asia, and Africa. His YouTube channel
garnered hundreds of millions of views.

 

Below are the six ways listed by the BBC Africa Eye in its
report:

 

“1: The emergency department: An exclusive section of the
church, named the “emergency department”, was responsible for making the
so-called miracles look real.

 

“This is where the sick, who came to be healed, would be
screened, and where the team would decide who should be filmed and prayed for
by Joshua.

 

“Agomoh Paul, who supervised the department for 10 years –
receiving direct instructions from Joshua, told the BBC that the team was
“trained by medical doctors”.

 

“He is a former disciple – one of an elite group of
dedicated followers who lived with the pastor inside the Scoan compound.

 

“Any cancerous situation, they send them away. Then, people
who had normal open wounds that can heal, they bring them in, to present as
cancer,” he says.

 

“Only a select group of trusted disciples were allowed to
work in the emergency department. They would write placards for each follower
to hold, detailing their made-up or exaggerated ailments. When it was time to
meet Joshua, they would stand in line in front of the cameras and be “healed”.

 

“It was a complicated system. Not all disciples knew what
was happening. It was a secret,” Mr Paul says.

 

“2: Drugs: Every foreign visitor who came to the church to
be healed had to fill out a medical report, detailing their illness and the
medication they were currently prescribed.

 

“They would be told to stop taking them, but Joshua would
order pharmacists to procure the same medicine.

 

“Without their knowledge, they would “put those drugs in
their fruit drinks,” explains Mr Paul, who said people would be urged to drink
the cocktail that had been blessed by Joshua.

 

“This meant while visitors were residing at SCOAN, they
would not become unwell and would believe in the divine healing powers of their
pastor.

 

“In the 1990s when HIV/AIDs had reached epidemic levels
across parts of sub-Saharan Africa, Joshua told visitors to stop taking their
antiretroviral medication when they returned home.

 

“I know people died because they didn’t take their medicine,
and it’s difficult to live with that,” admits a former disciple, who asked not
to be named.

 

“Tash Ford, now 49, who went to Lagos from the South African
city of Johannesburg in 2001 in the hope of having her failing kidney healed,
was told to stop taking her drugs.

 

“It was the promise that… you could supernaturally receive a
new kidney,” she told the BBC.

 

“At the time she had already had two kidney transplants. Ms
Ford says the disciples said: “Stop taking your medication and just believe.”

 

‘She did believe she had been healed. But when she got home,
after four weeks of not taking her medicine, she went into renal failure and
was admitted to hospital.

 

“The medics initially managed to save her kidney but
eventually it stopped working and she had to have kidney dialysis for more than
six years before having a third transplant in 2011.

 

“3: Brainwashing: Ms Ford says when she was at Scoan she
never had any doubts: “I honestly thought we were seeing miracles. I literally
couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I saw someone walk out of a wheelchair.”

 

“The theatricality seemed to draw everyone in.

 

“The former disciple told the BBC that after being screened,
the chosen followers would be told to “exaggerate their problems so that God
can heal you and exaggerate your healing”.

 

 

“The church had a ready supply of wheelchairs which
followers were coaxed to use. They were warned they would not be healed unless
they sat in one when they met Joshua.

 

“We are telling them: ‘If you come out there, and walk with
your legs, Papa will not pray for you. You need to shout: “Man of God, help me,
I cannot walk,”‘” says Mr Paul.

 

“Another former disciple, Bisola, who spent 14 years living
at Scoan, accompanied Joshua on his National Healing Campaign at the Church of
Our Saviour in Singapore in 2006.

 

“She says she saw people in wheelchairs try to stand up
after the pastor told the congregation “he had released faith into the
stadium”.

 

“However, these people had not been screened and she saw
them fall down. “I was crying. I was crying for them,” she says.

 

“The emergency department workers themselves were also being
manipulated. They were subjected to horrifying ordeals, including rape,
physical violence, and torture, and lived by a strict set of rules – forbidden
to sleep for more than a few hours at a time.

 

“Now they struggle to understand how and why they continued
to follow the pastor’s orders.

 

“TB Joshua told me: ‘Don’t worry, we use this thing to build
people’s faith in Christ.’ I wasn’t having in mind that I was actually doing
something wrong. I thought I was doing something that would help to build the
faith of people in the church,” says Mr Paul.

 

“For Ms Ford, it has meant she has lost all faith in
organised religion: “I wish we had known that it was all a farce, that it
wasn’t true. I was manipulated into believing that what the prophet was doing
was supernatural, miracles, wonders, signs.”

 

“4: Bribes: Some disciples allege they were charged with
finding people who needed money to pretend to be sick.

 

“When they performed healing crusades in countries outside
Nigeria, they would go to the poorer areas of a city to search for people
living in poverty.

 

“We would say: ‘We need you to just act out this particular
scene and we will pay you,’” another former disciple told the BBC.

 

“We get them into hotels, we get them cleaned up. They come,
they do what they do. We give them their money and the rest is history,” she
says.

 

“Before the service, they would tell Joshua which rows they
had planted these people, and what clothes they were wearing, so he would know
who to perform his supposed miracles on.

 

“People would be brought in just to pretend that they were
healed,” she says.

 

‘5: Fake medical certificates: The “healing miracles”
broadcast to millions regularly included medical reports stating people had
been cured of HIV/Aids and diseases like cancer.

 

“Doctors were interviewed on camera confirming the cures.

 

“In 2000 Nigerian journalist Adejuwon Soyinka reported that
these medical certificates were fake, but Joshua quashed his investigation and
it went nowhere.

 

“To this day some people believe they were healed, but
insiders say it was all a performance on the late preacher’s part.

 

“The whole thing is stage-managed and faked. It’s faked,”
says Mr Paul, describing Joshua as an “evil genius”.

 

“There was nothing that took place in the compound that
Joshua did not know about, he explains.

 

“TB Joshua was the one who masterminded the whole
manipulation,” he says.

 

“6: Video manipulation: The “miracles” were filmed and then
edited to make it look like the supposed healing had happened instantaneously.
Before and after footage was spliced together to show his purported miraculous
powers, but in reality the films were shot months, or even a year, apart.

 

“All you see on TV is the before and after, you don’t know
the time-space,” says Bisola, who was Scoan’s chief video editor for five years
and worked on Emmanuel TV. Like other insiders interviewed by the BBC, she
opted to only use her first name.

 

“What people see… is not real. It is a fraud,” she says
about the clips and broadcasts she oversaw.

 

“I am speaking now as someone who was an insider,” she says.

 

“Anything they did not want viewers to see was “cut away”.
It was all “organised”, she says.

 

BBC Africa reached out to SCOAN with the allegations but
received no response, although the church denied previous claims against
Joshua, stating, “Making unfounded allegations against Prophet TB Joshua is not
a new occurrence… None of the allegations was ever substantiated.”

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