The Celestial Church of Christ pastor, Francis Taiwo, who starved and chained his 9-year-old son for months, has been arrested. The 40-year-old pastor was apprehended by the police from the Onipanu division on Sunday at his church – CCC, Key of Joy Parish – in Ajibawo, Atan, in the Ado-Odo/Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State.
According to the police, Francis might be charged with attempted murder, among other offences, after the completion of investigation.
Korede’s stepmother, Kehinde, had also been arrested for allegedly aiding the cruelty meted out to the boy.
Korede, who said he aspired to be a doctor, had blamed his father for his stealing habit.
"It is true that I stole a pot of soup and a bowl of eba in our house. I also stole in the neighbourhood. My father’s inability to give money to my stepmother for the upkeep of the family caused it. When I was chained, my father and stepmother fed me twice a day. Some days, I was not given any food. I want to go back to school because I want to be a doctor in the future. I do not want to go back to my father’s house," Korede had said.
Francis, a father of five who hails from Benin Republic, confessed to the act in his statement to the police, adding that Korede’s mother was late.
He said, "I was ordained a pastor in the CCC in 2012. I had divorced two wives, including Korede’s mother, Maria; she is late now. She had four children for me – two boys and two girls – before she divorced me in 2007 after she gave birth to Korede. I chained Korede because he is possessed. An evil spirit makes him to steal. He needs deliverance. His siblings are not living with me."
The Ogun State police spokesperson, SP Muyiwa Adejobi, said the case had been transferred to the child labour unit of the command for investigation.