A British agency, Charity Commission, has absolved Winners Chapel International of complicity in the alleged misappropriation of N3.4bn charity funds.
In a report published recently, the agency said Winners Chapel International, also known as World Mission Agency, demonstrated “good financial controls” for an organisation of its size.
While maintaining that the “employment of an individual who was related to the founder” generated a potential conflict, the United Kingdom-based agency said it was satisfied with the decision of the trustees in respect of the employment.
“Our review of the charity’s financial information identified minor discrepancies. However, the trustees were able to explain and resolve these. We found no evidence that N3.4bn or any other amount had been misappropriated.
“We were satisfied the charity could demonstrate good financial controls appropriate for a large and expanding charity,” said the report.
The agency said, investigations into the church’s books were launched following complaints from an “investigative journalist.”
Among other complaints, the agency investigated “the transfer of the charity’s funds to its sister organisation in Nigeria; the conduct of the charity’s founder, a pastor based in Nigeria who was (allegedly) caught on camera slapping a woman accused of being a witch across the face in front of a congregation; allegations that church members were encouraged to recruit vulnerable people into the church so they would contribute to the charity financially.”