About 10 years after the demise of the controversial Prophet Elijah Ajanaku, his widow, Joy Ajanaku has opened up on the circumstances that surrounded his death, the cult controversy, and his link with the rave-making gospel singer, Evang. Tope Alabi.
Prophet Ajanaku who was the General Overseer of Lagos-based Christ Revival Victory Chapel International, was quite close to Tope Alabi. He died in mysterious circumstances on August 17, 2013.
He was buried on July 17, 2014, about 11 months after his demise. There were reports that he belonged to the Ogboni cult and that the cult people came to claim his body after his death.
The Ogboni story
Mrs Ajanaku who is now the pastor of the church her husband left behind denied her husband’s involvement in the Ogboni cult. She however recalled that it was the craving for the property of her husband by his family members that stirred up the Ogboni story.
She said, ‘Immediately after my husband died, his family members came to the house and began to take some of our property. They took about four vehicles including a truck which was to be used for evangelism. At a point, I was wondering if they knew he was going to die.”
But when, according to her, she could no longer tolerate their indiscretion, “they came up with the Ogboni story and said the Ogboni people wanted N3 million and that they had threatened to come for his body.”
Mrs. Ajanaku said she did not give in to their threat adding however that, ‘It was my immaturity at the time of my husband’s death that further fueled the rumour of the Ogboni connection.
“When he died, I believed he would still come back to life. I did not allow his remains to be buried. I brought his corpse home and laid it on his bed, praying for him to come back to life. It was on that bed that the body was embalmed.
“I did not allow anybody to take his corpse away. But at a point, we had to move the corpse to a military morgue. It was in that morgue for about three months. I was not comfortable with the morgue. We later moved his remains to a private morgue. It was from that morgue that his body was taken for burial.”
In the course of the interview, a clip showing the burial proceedings of the late prophet with his body intact was played.
Ajanaku’s widow explained further that she believed her husband “would come back to life because even in the morgue, his hair and fingernails were growing. That was what gave me the confidence that he would come back to life.”
But after about 10 months when her desire did not materialise, she agreed that the remains be buried.
Ten years after
She said a lot has happened in the last 10 years since her husband died. “At the time he died, it was only one branch of the church that we had.
But today we have branches that cost us millions to put together. It was after he died that I went to the university and graduated with a second-class upper degree. I have worked on myself and God has used me to continue the ministry from where he stopped.”
She said it was also not true that her husband died in the house of a herbalist. “He died in the sick bay of another church. That was where we took him after he was discharged from the hospital.
“I was with him at his transition and we have a video recording of how he called people around and told them he wanted to go and join some people in white and that I was going to take responsibility for the ministry.
“We even thought he was talking about traveling outside the country. We did not know he was talking about his death. I remember at the point of death he was speaking vigorously in tongues.”
On what killed her husband, she said, “My husband must have died of stress. He worked himself to death. He was always excited to see people and would sacrifice his all just to satisfy people. He would not rest. He worked late into the night. If I have the opportunity of advising men of God, I will tell them to rest.”
Tope Alabi connection
On the connection of her husband with Tope Alabi, she said, “I met my husband the same year Tope Alabi met him. That was in 2002. We married in 2003. I knew Tope Alabi was quite close to my husband because God used my husband to bring his singing ministry to the limelight.”
A video clip where the late Ajanaku gave a rundown of how he met Tope Alabi was played. The prophet said Tope Alabi and her husband came to him and he asked them what they wanted from God.
“The husband said car, the wife said house. I now said they should go and think about it very well and come back to tell me.
“Tope Alabi came back shortly after and said she would like her singing ministry to blossom. And I prayed for her. I said as from that day she would become so popular that she would not even have time for herself.”
Tope Alabi’s voice changed
Ajanaku’s widow picked the narrative from there adding that “since Tope Alabi met her husband something happened to her voice. Her voice changed. Only God, my husband, and Tope Alabi know the mystery behind the voice.” she said.
She said her husband and Tope Alabi related quite well until about a year before her husband’s death. “From my own understanding, I think they fell apart because Alabi did not want to be reprimanded and my husband loved to correct her. They fell apart a year before my husband’s death. The media did not help matters and some men of God too did not help matters. A lot combined to make them severe relationship”
God has been kind
Mrs Ajanaku said however that since her husband’s death, Alabi had not called to commiserate with her. She said her husband’s family members have abandoned her, but that “God has been kind”
She said, “I don’t know where I get the courage from. But I saw myself acting confidently and taking charge. Didn’t know I could preach. But today, I can preach and people are being blessed. My children were between the ages of 8 and 6 when my husband died.
“I had to withdraw them from the British school they were attending because of the cost when my husband died. Things were really tough. But today, God has vindicated me. I do all kinds of things, I have a farm, I sell, and do many things to make ends meet.”
She lamented that all those she never believed would desert them were the ones who deserted the church after the demise of Prophet Ajanaku.
Making reference to one gospel artist known as Iremide, she said, “She came to know my husband a few months before his death. My husband could not do much for her in terms of support. But people were making all kinds of insinuations that my husband transferred the glory of Aunty Tope Alabi to Iremide. That is not true. My husband only introduced her to the church and identified her as his daughter.
“When my husband died. I took up the responsibility of supporting her. Just a few years ago, I helped her to produce her album which was launched in Sheraton. But the lady has since abandoned the church.”
Mrs Ajanaku said the church would be celebrating the 10th anniversary of Prophet Ajanaku’s death on Sunday, July 30 alongside the 28th anniversary of the church.