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Jesus Never Taught This! Ebony, Shatta Wale – Sue The Charlatanic Prophets - Samson Lardy Anyenini Writes
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It is becoming obvious that these reckless and mostly charlatanic prophets are in a most bizarre unbiblical and almost satanic competition. They prophesy tragedy, doom and seek publicity for it.

Their targets have been prominent and significant people who must have a reasonable measure of wealth. It is obvious that’s the surest way to get media attention for their declarations that one will suffer a stroke, go mad or get killed in a motor accident. It is shocking and criminal that they quickly jump from one equally reckless unprofessional radio station to the other making a boast in celebration of tragedies as they befall this class of popular citizens.     

We know, as confirmed by our courts, courts don't deal with matters of spirituality. They simply do not have the capacity to investigate and confirm claims a person was killed by a witch or juju. The courts certainly will deal with the manifest outcomes of supernatural activities if how they are caused is physically traceable/can be linked to natural or legal persons. It's a difficult connection to make. But where a person claiming to possess such powers or abilities announces that another will be killed in an accident, and same happens, the connection should be capable of being made judicially. In fact, some are actually criminal threats of harm and death. To prove a crime, one must prove both mens rea (intention to commit it) and actus reus (the physical act of committing it). Guess what? Mere threats of harm or death “with intent to put that person in fear of harm [or] death” are punishable as crimes in Ghana by prison terms of up to three years and ten years respectively. See sections 74 and 75 of the Criminal Offences Act and 296 of the Criminal Procedure Act.

My focus here though isn't in criminal law but in a civil action in the law of tort where people are made to pay money in damages to those who suffer from their intentional and negligent acts. It may be a bit of stretch, but we can take inspiration from certain English precedents to innovate and adopt what suits our peculiar circumstances. In Wilkinson v Downton (as affirmed by the Court of Appeal in Janvier v Sweeney), Downton told Wilkinson that her husband was lying in a pub with broken legs. This was true. But Mrs. Wilkinson got a nervous shock and fell ill for weeks. The court held that Downton had “willfully done an act calculated to cause harm to the claimant – that is infringe her legal right to personal safety, and in fact thereby caused physical harm to her.” In lateng v Cooper and in Collins v Wilcock, intentionally causing another person reasonably to apprehend the application of immediate unlawful force to his/her person is all that makes the case of the tort of assault for the claimant. Observe that it is not fear, but apprehension of physical harm that is required and it doesn’t matter that the claimant or victim is a courageous person. It is critical to note that where the injury suffered is not physical but psychiatric, the damages (monetary compensation) for the negligent psychiatric injury is recoverable only exceptionally as affirmed by way of policy by the Court of Appeal in White v Chief of Constable of South Yorkshire Police.
Citizens should be ready to sue and I believe, in the absence of parliamentary intervention, our judges will not require a new head of tort to hold these prophets and co liable in damages for their reckless acts. It is fair that if someone suffers such trauma for their public declarations of impending accidents and deaths, they must be made to pay.
Ebony Reigns, apparently lost some business by declining to travel to one place or the other on account of these pronouncements. It's obvious she was held in the prison of fear and traumatized by these doom declarations. Shatta Wale is presently issuing counter threats and seeking prayers over similar declarations he will die in some accident or commit suicide. In the same way that the English precedent recognizes secondary victims (McLoughlin v O’Brian and Alcok v Chief of Constable of South Yorkshire Police), relations of such persons who witness such doom declarations on television or hear them indirectly and suffer the shock as a result should equally be able to sue for damages.

It is nauseating that some of these so-called prophets actually show up after a tragedy to make boast of having foretold same. This must engage Parliament and must not continue to go unpunished. Carelessly passing on wrong or even correct information or engaging in pure 419 under the cloak of religion cannot by any stretch constitute freedom of religion as guaranteed by the 1992 Constitution.

I was in Scripture Union and this certainly is not the kind of Christianity taught by Apostle Jude Hama, Prof. Kwesi Andam, Prof. Sam Afrane, Brother Kwame Adu or known teachers of acts of the Holy Spirit like Eastwood Anaba. Jesus never taught this!

February 17, 2018


Source: Samson Lardy ANYENINI/Ghana

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