There is a looming disturbance at the headquarters of the African Faith Tabernacle Church in Anyinam in Atiwa East District of Eastern Region over the planned burial of the late leader of the Church, Superior Prophet David Nkansah.
The leadership of the Church and Children of the late leader has described the intended burial and funeral rites by some few family members beginning March 20, 2023, as illegal, threatening to violently interfere to stop them despite threats of military and national security deployment on to protect the family.
Superior Prophet David Kwaku Nkansah died at Korle Bu Teaching Hospital on Wednesday, 16th February 2022.
National trustees of the Church and a section of his family have since been litigating over his burial and funeral rites as well as a selection of his successor.
The escalating tension compelled the Atiwa East District Security Council (DISEC) to shut down the headquarters of the church but some family members still occupy the mission house at the headquarters known as Bethlehem.
Speaking to the media the newly elected Leader of African Faith Tabernacle church Superior Prophet Stephen Frimpong Nkansah explained that, the constitution of the Church enjoins the leadership to perform befitting burial and funeral rites for the late leader in collaboration with the family.
However, a section of the bereaved family is blocking the Church leadership in this regard as part of the grand motive to take control of the Church as bonafide family property.
“The Church paid all medical costs of our late former leader when he was sick, flew him three times to India for kidney transplant without the support of any of his family members.
"After his passing, the Church took him to the morgue and did all documentation however the mortuary attendants are being threatened by some faceless security operatives to ignore the church leadership to release the body to the family for burial without the knowledge of the children and even the widow.
" We are calling on the IGP Dr. Akufo Dampare to intervene to avoid any clashes because we will not allow the family to desecrate the body of our late leader to bury him as an ordinary person.
"Even though he belongs to a family, the Church is his bigger family and as done for previous leaders the Church is supposed to perform befitting burial and funeral for him,” Superior Prophet Stephen Frimpong Nkansah told Starr News.
Osabarimaba Kwabena Boadu, elder Son of the late Superior Prophet Nkansah told Starr News that the Children are unaware of the intended burial and funeral rites and therefore will not allow it to happen.
“The funeral will not happen. I am repeating it, the funeral will not come off. When my father was sick no family member helped him even when he died it is the church that did everything and put him in the morgue so, on behalf of my siblings, I want to assure everyone that the burial and funeral will not happen. We the children and the Church are yet to meet to fix a date for the burial and funeral.”
Chief of Anyinam Barima Okogyeabusua Banin Duodu said the traditional council has not been officially informed about the intended burial and funeral rite of the late Superior Prophet David Nkansah, as tradition demands.
He said the dispute was taken to Okyenhene by the family however they were directed to take the matter first to Anyinam traditional council for resolution but the Head of the bereaved family did not show up.
The Anyinam District Police Commander Mahama Iddrisu told Starr News the Police has not been notified of the planned burial however considering the security implication will investigate for the necessary security intervention to maintain law and order.
After the demise of the Late Superior Prophet David Nkansah, a section of his family claimed that he nominated his 17-year-old cousin to be ordained as the next leader of the Church when he dies.
However, the Elders, Trustees, and Executives debunked the family’s assertion as false.
They chose Superior Prophet Stephen Frimpong Nkansah who was the linguist to the late Prophet David Nkansah to be the next leader.
The Elders, Trustees, and Executives subsequently issued a statement on April 13, 2022, “In the wake of the demise of the late Superior Prophet David Nkansah II, the National Trustees, National Officers, and the Regional Representatives of African Faith Tabernacle Church are pleased to announce the appointment of Chief Pastor Stephen Frimpong Nkansah as the acting leader of the Church, with effect from 7th April 2022”.
The statement described Chief Pastor Stephen Frimpong Nkansah as a competent leader who has broad and quite unique experience from both church leadership and doctrines.
Superior Prophet Stephen Frimpong Nkansah was confirmed during a National delegates election held at Amasaman in Greater Accra Region on March 11, 2023, with 379 delegates from 22 regions including La Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, London, and Australia having polled 355 votes to beat two other contenders- Chief Pastor Dr. Samuel Asare Baadu and Chief Pastor Apostle James Kofi Takyi who obtained 15 and 7 votes respectively, with two spoilt ballots.
African Faith Tabernacle Church is a renowned Ghanaian indigenous spiritual church founded in the year 1919 by the late prophet James Kwame Nkansah who died in 1987.
After his death, Superior Prophet David succeeded him until his death in 2022.
The headquarters of the Church is located in Anyinam in the Eastern Region.The church has over 1000 branches in Ghana, some West African countries, and Europe.
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