The families of the four people who lost their lives in a stampede at the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) in Accra last Sunday have described the death of their relatives as an act of God.
They have, therefore, accepted the unfortunate incident in good faith.
Although they described the tragedy as an agonising loss of loved ones, they had left everything in the hands of God who created mankind and knew best.
They also expressed appreciation to the leadership of the church for the concern it had shown so far.
A delegation from the Ghana branch of the church called on the families at their residences in Accra and Ashaiman yesterday.
On Sunday, May 19, four people died in a stampede at the Ghana branch of SCOAN when thousands of people seeking divine intervention besieged the church premises to benefit from the distribution of anointing water.
They were Michael Teye, 36; Emmanuel Thomas Addo, 69; Mr K. Brainoo, 61, and Ms Esther Adabazi, 38.
The anointing water was said to be a gift from the Head Pastor of the church, Prophet T. B. Joshua, who had announced during a church service in Lagos on Sunday, May 12, 2013 that the repackaged anointing water would be sent to the other branches of the church across the globe.
Although Prophet Joshua never mentioned specifically on Emmanuel TV or any other news media that people could receive the anointing water at the Ghana branch, it appeared many people anticipated that they could obtain the water at the branch, for which reason they came from far and near, resulting in the stampede.
The visit to the bereaved families was to allow for the SCOAN delegation, led by Evangelist Samuel Excellence, to commiserate with and inform them about the readiness of the church to partner them to give their loved relatives befitting burials.
It was a sad moment at all the four homes visited. Most of the women could not control their emotions and wept uncontrollably. They burst into tears whenever the names of the dead were mentioned during the discussions.
At Ashaiman Official Town, the late Teye’s family, led by Mr Joseph Larweh, said they grieved greatly on hearing the news of the death of their relative, who had gone to seek the face of God but died in the process.
He made reference to the Bible and said even though Jesus Christ had been in the world, his forerunner, John the Baptist, had been molested and beheaded.
He explained that it did not mean that Jesus could not save John but that was appointed unto John to die at that time.
Ms Harriet Brainoo, who spoke for the family of his late father, Mr Brainoo, at Ashaiman-Lebanon, stated, “It has not been easy but we accept his death in good faith. It was an accident for my dad who was just attending his normal Sunday service at his church to meet his untimely death.”
At the residence of the late Adabazi at Santa Maria in Accra, Mr Samuel Atteh, who spoke for the family, said the family believed strongly that their sister was with God, who had called her to eternity.
Mr Ibrahim Addo, the head of the late Addo’s family, said the death had been a big blow and a surprise to the entire family because Addo normally informed everybody in the house whenever he was going to church.
He added that unfortunately, he did not return that Sunday.
“It is Allah who brought us into this world and he knows when he wants to take us away” Mr Addo said.
Evangelist Excellence said the visit of the delegation was at the instance of Prophet Joshua who had also accepted total responsibility for Sunday’s incident, which led to the death of the four persons and injury to 13 others.
Among other things, Prophet Joshua has taken up the medical expenses and welfare of the victims.
He has also offered to compensate the bereaved families and ask for God’s blessings for them.
Evangelist Excellence had said “what happened outside the premises of the church” was an unfortunate incident and prayed to God that never again should such an incident happen.
He explained that the large crowd gathered outside of the church auditorium in great anticipation of the ‘anointing water’ which they had seen being introduced on Emmanuel TV the previous Sunday.
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