The worshippers panicked. Prophecy enthusiasts religiously kept the date. After all, there was no reason to doubt that God himself spoke through His servant.
The clergyman was specific: Nigeria wouldn’t only cease to exist by that year but also split into three.
“I see Nigeria splitting into three countries, the way things are going, unless this trend is arrested or God intervenes, within the space of two, three years Nigeria will split. If you are saying that this is the North’s agenda, I am not even surprised. I am not saying this based on what America said, but what God has showed me, and if we don’t come together to seek His face, this country will split before 2015,” he said.
Indeed, Nigeria tottered on dangerous paths during the period but weathered the storm.
The founder of Divine Seed of God Chapel in Ibadan, Oyo State, Prophet Wale Olagunju, was not left out of the breakup prophecies about Nigeria.
In the 50 prophecies reeled out by the clergyman in 2016, the number six prophecy dwelt on Nigeria’s breakup. He didn’t mince words about the country’s separation but was careful not to name a particular year.
The adjective, ‘imminent,’ was chosen to indicate that it would happen soon. The question of how soon was, however, unanswered particularly as the prophet said another generation would carry out the division.
He said, “Breakup is imminent in Nigeria. Another generation is coming that will break Nigeria without any war.”
In another 52-point prophecy in 2017, Olagunju prophesied afresh about Nigeria’s breakup. He explained that the country would be split into five, saying, “God revealed to me and I saw the map of Nigeria torn into five. By this, no amount of peace talk can prevent Nigeria’s disintegration. It is a matter of time.”
In a telephone interview with SUNDAY PUNCH, Olagunju, said he had been predicting Nigeria’s disintegration since 2002.
According to him, current events in the country indicate that the breakup of the country is imminent.
Asked why other prophets prophesied the country’s unity instead of disintegration, the cleric said those ones shouldn’t be minded.
“God told me that the prophecy will come to pass after the passing on of some prominent Nigerians. There is nothing that can be done about Nigeria’s disintegration. It will come to pass,” he insisted.
If Olagunju was circumspect in his breakup prophecy, the General Overseer of God’s Covenant of Christ Sabbath Mission, Amannachi, Imo State, High Priest Clifford Nmenabu, threw caution to the wind.
His prophecy released in 2015 also showed a backing for Biafra; he said the prediction came to him in 1971 about the coming of an entity called Biafra. He claimed to have first got the prophecy in 1971; a year after the end of the civil war.
He stated, “The revelation came this way: The spirit of God showed me a finger that pointed at the Nigerian map. It subsequently showed the map divided in two, one part was named Biafra and the other, Nigeria. Also in 1996, God visited and showed me, in a trance, where property belonging to Nigeria was kept in a place at the Bridge Head, Onitsha. While some of the property was thrown across to the Asaba end of the Niger Bridge, the other was thrown across to the Onitsha end. The prophecy also says that the one thrown to Asaba area belongs to Nigeria, while the other belongs to Biafra.”
The General Overseer of Inri Evangelical Spiritual Church, Lagos, Primate Elijah Babatunde Ayodele, who is not a stranger to prophecies also gave similar prophecy.
SUNDAY PUNCH learnt that Ayodele presents a book of prophecy to the public every year as a spiritual guide for the nation. Though some of his prophecies had come to pass, many others went off the mark.
Ayodele in 2010 declared that Nigeria would split, adding that it didn’t matter whether the citizens prayed or not as it was God’s wish.
He said, “I am saying it for the avoidance of doubt that Nigeria will break up. Whether we pray or not, it is the wish of God. I know many people may not like to hear this. Some may be saying why is this man talking like this, but it is what God has decreed. Nigeria will not experience peace until it breaks up. I don’t know when it will happen but it will come to pass.’’
Ayodele was quick to add in the prophecy that he was unsure of the exact time the country would split.
Again in 2017, Ayodele said the country would break up precisely in 2035.
In his fresh predictions, the prophet said, “Already we are working towards breaking up and I tell you, it’s only prayers that can prevent Nigeria from breaking up in 2035. Mark my words. Whether the powers that be want it or not, I foresee a very big referendum coming, in which all issues troubling the soul of Nigeria would be tackled.’’
When contacted, Ayodele told SUNDAY PUNCH that in 2010 when he gave the prophecy about the country’s breakup, he didn’t fix a precise time to when such would occur as it wasn’t revealed to him.
“In 2010, we only said ‘Nigeria will still break up,’ “he stated.
He noted that the breakup of the country would be in 2035, adding, “The country is on the verge if disintegration. The only thing is that when it happens, there will be no bloodshed. There will come a messiah who will take the country to the next level.”
He noted that the prophecy wasn’t an analysis but a spiritual message. “We have prayed about it. Our country is under threat. It will be a surprise when it (disintegration) happens,” he added.
Also, Prophet Peter Owa, founder of Christ Revival Miracle Centre, had in 2011 predicted Nigeria’s breakup into three.
Owa had declared that Nigeria would ‘soon’ split because of the way things were going. He added, “God told me that Nigeria would break into three. It does not necessarily have to happen this year (2011), but it is not going to be long. The indicator for the split is manifesting gradually and it will come to pass. There is no amount of prayer that can stop this because it is the will of God and that is the only way lasting peace can be guaranteed in Nigeria.
“It is not the case that God does not want the unity of Nigeria, but this has to happen because that is the way He has chosen it to be. God showed me this vision in 1969, when I was still very young. God showed me three crowns and when I asked Him what it meant, He told me Nigeria would split into three. God always stands by His word, and this is the only prediction among many that is waiting for fulfillment. With the trend of things at the moment, it is certain that the split is around the corner,” he stated.
He also said Arewa, Oduduwa and another nation would stand as an individual nation after the breakup.
Despite the prophecies that Nigeria would disintegrate, some clerics saw opposing prophecy in that regard.
The General Overseer, God Liveth Worldwide Ministry, Akure, Ondo State, Rev. Soji Gbadebo, reportedly described those reeling out breakup prophecies for Nigeria as ‘prophets of doom.’
Gbadebo, who canvassed patriotism from Nigerians, said it would not be in the interest of anybody if the country breaks.
“When an America wakes up in the morning, he says, ‘God bless America.’ Let us follow that path and begin to say, ‘God bless Nigeria.’ Nigeria is a creation of God. It is God that created Nigeria. No power can break this country. We are too big for anything to divide us .We are we going to start?
“It is our prayer that Nigeria should not break, God forbid, it will not pay anybody. It will not be in the interest of anybody, group or individuals,’’ he said.
Commenting on the issue, an associate lecturer at the Islamic Studies Department, Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin, Kwara State, Shaykh Ahmad Yahya, who described the knowledge of unseen as restricted only to Allah, said no man could claim to have the power to accurately predict what would happen tomorrow.
Yahya, who is also the Head, Religious Programmes Section, UNILORIN FM, added that though some prophets could receive inspiration from Allah, “That inspiration is confined. They can’t claim knowledge of unseen. Making prophecy is considered false in Islam.’’
Also, a psychology expert, Prof. Oni Fagboungbe, said prophecies achieve two things: to refocus and strengthen people’s hope that certain things would happen at a particular time and to prevent the occurrence of some things.
The psychologist noted that prophecies could be scientific by exuding facts and figures after their subjection to rigorous research, adding that they could also be faked by employing mere permutations and guess work.
According to him, some variables and events determine the fulfillment or otherwise of prophecies.
Fagboungbe noted that the unfulfilled prophecies about Nigeria’s breakup didn’t mean the predictions were fake.
He stated, “Some variables are not considered like the resilience of Nigerians which can deliberately change the variables at the time of the prophecies. In the law of effect, a stimulus that brings pleasure will be maximised while the one that brings pain will be minimised. Human beings desire to survive, enjoy life and be free from pain.
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