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Manasseh Writes The trial of Mensa Otabil - Pulse Ghana

Listen to Dr. Mensa Otabil with 20 episodes. No signup or install Delight Your Marriage | Relationship Advice, Christianity, & Sexual Intimacy. 1. Delight Your. I had a special relationship with the man standing trial. Dr. Mensa Otabil was the board chairman of one of the failed banks. If the answer is that Pastor Otabil should have known better and given better advice based on. I have an advanced degree in counseling and hundreds of hours experience working with couples. I've taught marriage retreats for years. I wouldn't say I'm an .

For being who he was, he was loved and hated. In almost equal measure. This was the man who was in the centre of the storm. Seven banks in the land had collapsed under disturbing circumstances. Those who had enough expertise in the sector said the banks were mismanaged.

Some of them had borrowed money from the Central Bank to revive their operations. Those monies, according to a leaked report which was being challengedwere misused. Part of that money was used for other investments, other than the core functions of the banks. Mensa Otabil was the board chairman of one of the failed banks.

The reason I was being hounded to speak was not because I had any expertise in the banking sector. It was because my callers knew Pastor Mensa Otabil was my role model and mentor in many ways. That was not a secret. What was not widely known was the fact that he was also a father to me.

He was one of the people who encouraged me, especially when I came under the wrath of the nation, when the attacks rained on me like fire and brimstone. In Ghana, in those days, different reasons motivated attacks. It was more about the person involved than the issue at stake. On another, I was attacked because I exposed the misdeeds of a business empire that was built on dubious and corrupt contracts from the state.

For instance, I provided proof of how a contract that was supposed to cost less than one million cedis was awarded at a cost of over 62 million cedis. My attackers, led by the Ghana Journalists Association, accused me of attempting to destroy Ghanaian businesses. Now, back to my tale: On the issue of the collapsed banks, Ghanaians had reason to be upset.

Besides, some of the people who had lost their jobs as a result of the failed banks found it difficult to keep their bodies and souls together. It was their right to express their minds. I did not defend those who supervised the collapse. On the criticism of the players, it was understandable that Pastor Mensa Otabil would arouse more interest because of what he stood for — excellence. But it appeared there was something more sinister in the trial of Pastor Mensa Otabil than his role in the banking saga.

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The spontaneous gloating and sadism, which greeted social media when his name popped up, raised questions I needed answers to before I could respond to their call to join condemning him.

I wanted to know why every arsenal employed came down to one man. There were seven banks, so if Dr. Mensa Otabil was Chairman of one board, why were all the rest of board chairpersons left out? Why did people not care to even know their names? Granted each board had five board members, it was safe to say there were 35 other board of directors.

Why was everyone left out completely? Kwabena Duffuor, owner of one of the collapsed banks, left out of the attacks? When I was too young to impregnate a woman, Dr. Duffuor was the Governor of the Bank of Ghana.

So shelve your monocle! I also wanted to know if the nation was really outraged about the misuse of public funds. One ill-informed bloke who called me out was highly applauded when he saidI would have made noise if the GHS million loan to Capital Bank had been given to Zoomlion. Had I not shown the nation how a single fraudulent contract given to Zoomlion to manage the sweepers in Ghana had cost the state more than GHS2.

Nobody stirred over this revelation. They accused me of hating the owner of the company when I persisted. Was this not slavery? So it appeared the calls on me to comment were calls to do one thing: Like Julius Caesar, they came to bury Otabil, not to praise him.

They needed me to prove that I was bold. But I told them it was good to be bold and fearless, but sometimes it was better to be a coward. I would not publicly attack a father who would have reached out to solidarize with me if I were in the centre of the storm.

Besides, I had no point to prove to anyone. My convictions did not thrive on the validation of the crowd. I was not going to be part of the jubilant pallbearers of Mensa Otabil. I respected their right to condemn him, and they should also respect my right not to offer an opinion after reporting the news.

The call on me to condemn Pastor Otabil was also unjustified. Unlike the stories I had personally investigated, the banking reports carried by the media were solely based on portions of a leaked report. No one had owned up to it. I, like the other journalists, could not independently verify or stand by the claims in there. Rushing to judgment came with consequences I was too familiar with. People did not take my comments, even those on social media, lightly.

I was happy to meet them in court because I was armed with published and unpublished facts to defend myself. State institutions were investigating the matter and had promised to deal ruthlessly with whoever was found culpable. Mensa Otabil was found culpable and was to be shot or hanged, as some people had suggested, I would still learn lessons from his successes and failures as a fallible mortal being who dared to dream. Before he was found guilty and sentenced to death, Socrates said: A stately man, dressed in a flowing royal blue African Kufti, strides with authority toward the pulpit.

Harvey Cox claims that Pentecostalism, along with conservative Islam, is the most rapidly expanding religion of our times. Later, he moved to the Tema Christian Fellowship in suburban Accra while he pursued a career as a graphic designer. AboutOtabil began holding home Bible studies. This group continued to grow and led to seventy people founding the International Central Gospel Church in February At present, Otabil is gaining an audience far beyond Ghana.

He serves as the Chancellor of the 1, students Central University College with students from throughout West Africa. The church has launched more than a hundred satellites including two congregations in the United States, and one each in England, the Netherlands and South Africa. In Pentecostal conferences that affirm each others ministries and messages Otabil is a frequent preacher.

Los Angeles-based tele-evangelist Fred Price attributes the impact of Beyond the Rivers to his decision to focus more on African identity in his preaching while another tele-evangelist, Myles Murnoe Bahamas speaks glowingly of the book and its message. Afrocentric Christian theology can trace its germinus back to the themes of liberation first taught by scholars James Cone, Deotis Roberts, and others. Most Pentecostals in Africa, however are far more interested in navigating through the spiritual realms of demons, witches, and angels that float freely through this world than deal with issues of social justice.

Indeed, apart from nuances of this message from Ghanian Kwame Bediako who looks at the Afrikanian movement in its relation to Christianity it would seem that there is no outspoken Afrocentric evangelicalism in Africa beyond South Africa. But who knows if this pattern will continue? African Christianity is transmutating as fast as can be imagined. How does this lack of an Afrocentric social justice agenda express itself in the role that African Evangelicals play a role in affecting the political climate of their nations?

Most Pentecostals would claim that they are apolitical with any influence along political lines being seemingly indirect. Apostle Michael Ntumy, Chair of the Church of Pentecost asks Pentecostals to focus on intercessory prayer instead of confrontation with political powers.

Using this model, Ghanian Pentecostalism cannot now be described as apolitical. More than ever, they are awakened to their political duties.

Larbi notes that both Prophet Martinson Yeboah and Rev. Asore served as State Councilors. Otabil is engaged in a social justice agenda that informs his preaching and is directly related to his liberationist Afrocentric call for cultural empowerment.

The pastor claims to hold to a policy of not officially aligning himself with any particular political party. The foundational theological idea in Beyond the Rivers of Ethiopia is the conviction African people have lost their sense of identity through the ravages of slavery and colonialism. Mwase describes how a debilitating sense of victimization has taken hold among many Zimbabwean Christians. Otabil contrasts this tendency with the cardinal principle of his socio-theological perspective: Rooting identity in creation empowers Africans toward liberation.

When one loses their own sense of being crafted by God, they are open to subjugation and abuse. The spirit of racism thrives on misinformation and stereotyping. Instead of portraying people in the likeness of God, it seeks to devalue the worth of people who are different from us as not being as good as us.

Inferiority is developed when you do not see what someone else sees, hears what he hears nor understand what he understands nor know what he knows. So then f any individual or groups of people mean to dominate you they would first endeavor to manipulate what you see, hear, and understand. Africa, however, is not the sole focus of his Afrocentric theology. His sermons are frequently marked with the recounting of his own experiences of hardship growing up without wealth or status.

From a theological vantage, much of what Otabil claims to be battling in society springs from delusional misconceptions about individual value. Even our Bible Colleges have little or no material written by our own people. He is beyond our petty color-barriers and transcends race.

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This is equally available to all persons. As a black man, I have observed that a war is being waged on all fronts to portray our people in a very negative light.

This conditioning can only be broken by the realization of the truth [28] that Africans are not inferior. He is a covenant keeping God! Pentecostals view the contemporary era to be just as holy as any other period in history because God is present through the Spirit and Pentecostalism offers itself as the completion or the restoration or the continuation of the book of Acts and thus sees itself as a more ideal fulfillment than other forms of Christian faith. Glossalalia is the new common world language of faith.

Historic Pentecostalism teaches God has a plan for every person and, by extension, for every culture. It is now incumbent for all Africans to attain an enlightened understanding of their identity in God should expect ferocious opposition from the malevolent spiritual forces that would work to keep them oppressed. Persecution is seen to be a result of a spiritual calling to fulfill a great vision for God. Otabil acknowledges the influence that Kenneth Hagin has had on his development until but the pastor fully rejects the cause and effect prosperity doctrine of Hagin, E.

No one goes out of the way to destroy a poor or weak person. You have to ask yourself why is it although the black people are supposed to be weak everyone attacks them. They are supposed to be weak, poor and not have anything but it seems that everything is being done to suppress them. When these people start to stand in that place, there is going to come a light and a redemption to the nations.

Breaking these bondages, Otabil preaches, will require both spiritual and material solutions. Peter Wagner or Eduardo Silvoso advocate. Like many Pentecostals operating from a community often suspicious of anything but preaching and healing, the author finds himself constrained to support every conviction with clearly proven Biblical precedent.

This view is not unique and has also been a theme in the exegesis of Charles Cipher, William McKissic, Cain Hope Felder and many other Afrocentric theologians; [42] but Otabil cites none of these sources. Africans do not need to look to anyone but God. Divine blessings are available to aid Africans in fulfilling their call to lead Christians worldwide at this dangerous era in world history.

What will compromise that destiny are those Africans who mistakenly choose to imitate other cultures: I do not believe the church in Africa should be ruled from anywhere but Africa.

Our leaders must be home brewed. Our finances must be generated from the productive work of our own resources. Our headquarters must be Africa! When it becomes necessary to cooperate with other churches and ministries beyond our continent it must be based on mutual respect and love.

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Mental slavery for Otabil, leads to a mind-set which fosters dependence and are hindrances to economic and cultural development. Independence is the fruit of a community of Christians living free of the delusion of insufficiency.

Africans need to shake themselves from long-held assumptions about their short-comings before they can assert themselves with confidence in the world. Otabil maintains that Abraham, is the father of all African peoples of the world.

Africa joins Abraham in Genesis A form of music that was later named Negro Spirituals. They did not produce carnality. They produced spirituality out of the abundance of what was in them. Go to any authentic Black congregation they may not preach right but they sure will sing the anointing upon you! It is through praise and worship that the presence of God is released among his people. Unfortunately, when the missionaries came, they put aside our music and brought their sedate and unexciting music forms, but, Thank God, the music is coming back to the church.

Jethro is described as a priest in the order of Melchizedek who helps Moses discard false ideas from the African Egyptian religion of his upbringing into the true understanding of proper African-Abrahamic faith. Later, it would be through the oft-maligned people of Midian that God would take Joseph into Egypt.

Unlike some Afrocentrists, Otabil does not advocate the return to all traditions African. In his preaching he frequently distinguishes between ancient principles which are universal in their value and practices which are rooted in specific historical times.

Traditions are rooted in contexts which are often outmoded and they must be set aside in the name of progress. This does not nullify the fact that they may have been helpful to previous generations. But today, these same traditions can be burdensome.

Anger is able to produce the changes which are so long in coming. Anger is not one dimensional. A confident church must confront injustice wherever it might originate. The time has come for Africans around the world to take their position of spiritual authority in the world.

In II Samuel I believe that the time of duplicating messages which we have read from others is over.

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You did it yesterday but today, stand aside because there is a new hour, a new day and a new man must deliver the message. This is our time to reach our own. God is telling the black Sic. The time of servanthood and slavery of the black man has come to an end. We have to move backwards in order to move forwards. When we want to trace Black history, we do not trace it in a narrow cultural sense.

We have to go backward and see how God has dealt with us in difficult times. Whenever the world has been in a crisis, the Black man has always appeared on the scene. When I arrived the good Doctor continued away on the computer, with his back to me. Over his shoulder I could see an extensive, eclectic library. The methodologies that I used to answer these questions were to visit with Otabil, attend a number of services, and meet with members of the church, with theologians from the Central University College, and to listen to three dozen sermons given by Otabil within the last year.

My findings were mixed. As Gifford suggests, Otabil has adapted his focus since he began writing on Afrocentric themes a decade ago. But all of these seemed to be traces of intent instead of signposts of actual practice. A glance at the University library showed a similar dearth of less than a dozen books on Afrocentric issues. Otabil seems to be something of a loner when it comes to networking outside Ghana. His book is still widely distributed in the United States. In the past he was much more involved with the larger international Charismatic community especially with Pastor Myles Munroe of the Bahamas.

Otabil does still maintain contacts with his friend of many years, Pastor Randy Morrison, a West Indian, who is now pastoring a church near Minneapolis Minnesota. My heart is in Ghana! After that the rest can take care of itself I still do not feel a full release to really focus on the nations of the world. The Holy Spirit is still restraining me It is so easy to get sucked into the American preaching system.

It is attractive there. There are good places to go there. But you are not careful you can lose your focus. My main concern for these last seven years has shifted from trying to talk to the world to trying to help people in difficult conditions here.