Evangelist Ezekiel Odero of the New Life Prayer Centre and Church has claimed that he has suffered losses amounting to Sh20 million since he was arrested on April 27, 2023.
In a letter by his lawyer Danstan Omari to Inspector General of Police Japheth Koome, Pastor Ezekiel- as he is commonly known- said the loss included accommodation charges expected by the church (Sh2 million) and wasted food (Sh500,000).
Ezekiel said the loss of offering and tithe in addition to the damage to his image and reputation of the church is Sh17 million.
“You are warned of legal action being taken against you in person and other higher-ranking police officers who have resolved to act with impunity and in abuse of your constitutional mandate,” he stated.
Omari said he has instructions to prosecute Koome for continued violation of his client’s human rights and fundamental freedoms.
He noted that he raised the matter with the Independent Policing and Oversight Authority so that the conduct of Koome could be investigated.
Omari regretted that on May 7, 2023, police officers forcefully entered his client’s church while others barricaded the entrance leading to the place of worship, effectively making it impossible for the faithful to congregate for their Sunday service.
“Sadly, you continue to act in violation of our client’s right to worship, lead others in worship, his freedom to associate with others and to express himself,” he added.
He further added that Koome’s actions are discriminatory as he has prevented Ezekiel’s church from operating despite it being registered under the Societies Act.
He said about 2,500 workers that were stopped from accessing the compound to continue with the construction works.
“As such, the school opening date for the Kilifi International School and the Kilifi University will more likely be affected,” Omari added.
Ezekiel was arrested over reports of “mass killings of his followers” at his New Life Prayer Centre and Church in the Mavueni area.
Detectives also believe Ezekiel conspired with Pastor Paul Mackenzie of Good News International to have the bodies of some of the faithful who died in his church, secretly buried at Shakakhola.
Mackenzie was arrested two weeks ago for alleged links to cultism.
A lower court freed him this week but he was rearrested and presented to a higher court.
On May 4, 2023, Shanzu senior principal magistrate Joe Omido ordered the preacher to be released on a bond of Ksh3 million bond with one similar surety with an alternative of Sh1.5 million cash bail.
Omido observed that the state in its second move to have Odero detained for 30 days was not in good faith.
The magistrate further ordered Odero to report to detectives once a week in accordance with directives from the DCI.