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TB Joshua, Others Fail to appear in Court

The judge presiding over the collapsed Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN), Justice Lawal Akapo was unable to give a verdict on the case as the senior Pastor of the Church, Temitope Babatunde Joshua and the two contractors, who constructed the building failed to appear before in court to face trial for criminal negligence,which prompting the judge to adjourn the case.
The Absence of the defendants forced the Judge to adjourn the case to December 11, 2015 with order that the defence team should in 72 hours provide the court with the defendants.
The case at the Lagos high court followed a coroner’s ruling in July that blamed Joshua’s Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN) and two engineers for the September 12, 2014 tragedy, which most of the 116 victims were South Africans
Coroner Oyetade Komolafe in his verdict attributed the collapse to structural failures and said the church should be prosecuted as the six-storey guesthouse did not have planning permission.
Joshua, who maintains the collapse was caused by a mysterious “hovering” aircraft seen over the building beforehand or a controlled explosion, repeatedly failed to appear at the inquest.
At court on Monday, Joshua was again absent, as were the two engineers who have called the coroner’s verdict “unreasonable, one-sided and biased”. One member of the church’s trustees was present. The hearing was told the engineers, who have unsuccessfully tried to obtain an injunction to prevent their arrest and prosecution, had not been served with a summons.
Judge Lawal Akapo said he was unhappy at the defendants’ absence and said he would not tolerate any unnecessary delays of the trial. “It appears the defendants are not mindful that this is a criminal proceeding. This is a criminal trial and a sensitive matter like this one should be given accelerated hearing,” he said.
T.B Joshua, who counts powerful politicians from across Africa among his flock, is known to followers as “The Prophet” and “The Man of God”.

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