Church Confirms Oritsejafor's Ownership Of Jet Involved In Smuggling $9.3m Into South Africa
… Jet Leased To Another Company Which Operates It For Executive Charter Services
BEVERLY HILLS, September 16, (THEWILL) - The World of Life Bible Church, founded by Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor has confirmed that the Bombardier Challenger 600, with registration tag N808HG that was used to transport $9.3 million dollars in cash for the purchase of arms in South Africa is owned by the flamboyant preacher, but has since been leased to Green Coast Produce Limited which operates it for executive charter services.
South African authorities seized the cash over the weekend at an airport in Johannesburg because it was undeclared/undisclosed and way above the limit allowed into the country in cash without prior clearance.
Customs and police questioned two Nigerians and an Israeli who accompanied the cash reportedly concealed in three suitcases.
The statement from the church signed by Bayo Adewoye reads: 'The Word of Life Bible Church has been made aware of the recent media interest regarding an aircraft (Bombardier Challenger 600, Registration No N808HG) owned by The Company Eagle Air in which our Pastor, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, holds a residual interest.
'On behalf of Pastor Oritsejafor, we can confirm that although he holds an interest in Eagle Air, the aircraft in question is not operated by Pastor Oritsejafor.
'The aircraft owned by Eagle Air Company, who have confirmed that since 2nd August 2014, the aircraft has been leased to and is operated by Green Coast Produce Limited.
'This is a standard practice in the industry.
'Any and all enquiries in respect of the day-to-day operations of this aircraft are properly directed to the Management of Green Coast Produce Limited.
'We will be happy to help the authorities with any enquiries.
Also, Eagle Air Company has admitted ownership of the jet which was briefly detained in South Africa saying the aircraft has since the 2nd of August 2014 been leased to and is operated by Green Coast Produce Limited.
In another statement, Green Coast Produce Company Limited confirmed that it leased the aircraft from Eagle Air Company saying that the jet was hired by a John Ishyaku.
'On the 5th of September 2014 the aircraft was hired from us by a John Ishyaku. The charter to John Ishyaku was upon the following documented terms: (a) Depart Abuja-Johannesburg on the 5th of September 2014 (b) Return to Abuja on the 6th of September 2014 (c) To wait and return with the passengers'
'All cargoes were accompanied by passenger who could readily defend the contents. We are not and cannot be privy to any alleged extraneous cargo transported on the aircraft other than that declared in the agreed terms of hire,' the firm said.
'We are not liable and cannot be construed as a party to any alleged infractions, either in Nigeria or South Africa as he case may be, after the hire of the aircraft,' the company added.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) which Oritsejafor heads also issued a statement accusing the APC's Lai Mohammed and Nasiru El-Rufai of a desperate attempt to tarnish Oritsejafor's reputation.
The CAN statement reads:
'Re: ORITSEJAFOR AIRCRAFT & ALLEGED ARMS DEAL: CAN REACTS
Our attention has been drawn to the desperation of some elements working for a particular political party within our society to tarnish the image of the President of Christian Association of Nigeria, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor. They are working for the All Progressives Congress and they are not unknown to us. Let Nigerians have this background for them to judge themselves.
These shameless characters including a former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Mallam Nasir El-Rufai and National Publicity Secretary of All Progressives Congress, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, went to UK to embark on an image laundering for their political party, the APC. El-Rufai had once said there are three sets of Boko Haram in Nigeria: Islamic Boko Haram, Politicians' Boko Haram and Christians' Boko Haram which he said are being funded by President Goodluck Jonathan and coordinated by CAN President, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor. He went further to claim that the CAN President has been given N50 billion by the President and a Jet.
The same characters, went head to sponsor a negative report in Saharareporters. I had expected that by now no sane mind will take any report by Saharareporters serious because it is an online news medium which thrives on falsehood and survives on false propaganda and blackmail.
The aircraft in question is owned by Eagle Air Company and the CAN President is an interested party in the company. Since August 2 2014, this Aircraft has been leased to Green Coast Produce Limited. They lease this aircraft and people rent it from them. Anybody in this country will attest to the fact that Pastor Ayo Oritsejfor has been following Chartered Airlines. All investigations about the plane should be directed to the management of Green Coast Produce Limited, a duly registered company. Further enquiries about this should be confirmed from Eagle Air Company which leased this Aircraft.
El-Rufai has accused Jesus Christ severally in recent times. El-Rufai and his group met and decided to launch blackmail against Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor because he is an ardent supporter of President Goodluck Jonathan. This, he did, to elicit sentiment from the society. We want Nigerians to ponder over this: if Nigeria wants to buy arms, the government knows where to get their weapons. How did Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor come into this?
The report is a well organized orchestrated plan, all because of their desperation for the 2015 general elections. If not for the blindness and intellectual myopia of some Nigerians, people in the calibre of El-Rufai shouldn't be taken seriously and should not be walking on the streets. This was the same El-Rufai abusing Gen. Muhammad's Buhari (retd) and ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo, calling them all sorts of names. El-Rufai is more of a Street Boy whose history and antecedents are very much known. He has been the person defending Boko Haram and this is an opportunity for him to hide his misdeeds. We are waiting and we can assure you that at the appropriate time, he and his allies will pay dearly for it. The international community sees APC as an Islamic party; instead of El-Rufai to deny that, he was busy orchestrating spurious propaganda against Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor.
The public should also not forget that it was Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor who went to the United States' Congress and suggested that Boko Haram Islamic sect should be domesticated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). It is the same El-Rufai who is accusing the CAN President as the person behind Boko Haram. A word should be enough for the wise!
SIGN… MR. SUNNY OIBE DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL ISSUES (CAN) DATED: TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 16 2014.'