Devastating Impact of False Prophets on Igbo Families and Communities


Many families in Igbo communities have been plunged into crises due to the influence of false prophets and pastors. These individuals, claiming to be prophets of God, have given false prophecies that have torn apart families and communities, leading to deep divisions and even violence.

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In some instances, these prophecies have incited rage, resulting in attacks on alleged offenders, causing deaths, injuries, and destruction of property. This has left lasting acrimony and hatred among the people. In other cases, these “men of God” have destroyed valuable historical artifacts, claiming they bring bad luck.

In Anambra State, several people recounted how these so-called prophets have created sharp divisions and enduring animosity among family members. Often, when a family member falls ill or a community faces misfortune, a prophet is invited to identify the supposed cause. These prophets frequently accuse specific individuals, leading to significant conflict.

Leonard Nnadi, a businessman from Awka, shared how a prophet’s intervention five years ago created lasting distrust within his family. When his sister fell ill, despite medical and herbal treatments, the family turned to a prophet. The prophet conducted a ritual in their home, claiming to find a charm buried by their uncle, whom he accused of causing the illness and misfortunes. This led to deep-seated hatred, and even after the uncle’s death, the family remained divided.

Chief Ezemba Nwosu from Omor in Ayamelum also shared how a pastor’s cleansing ceremony caused lasting harm. The community invited a pastor to address their lack of progress, who then ordered the destruction of ancestral symbols and monumental trees, claiming they were sources of poverty. Despite significant expense, the community saw no improvement.

The traditional ruler of Obosi, Igwe Chidubem Iweka, expressed serious concern over the harm caused by false prophets, calling for laws to curb their activities. He emphasized the need to distinguish between genuine and fake spiritual leaders.

In Ebonyi State, a controversial prophecy led to the destruction of property and violence against a man accused of being an evildoer. This incident prompted the local ruler to ban prophets and prophetesses from the community due to the problems they caused.

Pastor Ukandu Jacobs, Chairman of the Ministerial Council of the Church of God (Seventh Day) in Abia State, warned against fake prophets, stating that their prophecies bring confusion and conflict. He urged people to verify the authenticity of those claiming to be prophets.

Chief Jasper Nwachukwu from Imo State narrated how a false prophecy led to his aunt and cousins abandoning their family for over 17 years out of fear and suspicion. This caused a permanent rift within the family.

Evangelist Christian Ugwu described false prophecy as a poison that has destroyed many families. He urged people to rely on their faith and prayers instead of seeking prophecies, which often lead to turmoil.

Lolo Nneka Chimezie, National President of the Igbo Women Assembly, advised Christians to develop personal relationships with God rather than relying on third parties. She lamented that commercial pastors and fake prophets have disrupted the peace of many families.

Professor Damian Opata highlighted that fake prophecy is often a survival strategy in hard times, with some spiritual leaders exploiting people for financial gain. He noted that such practices have caused chaos in many families.

Charles Akpeji
Charles Akpeji
Charles Akpeji has over 20 years experience in journalism and he is Naija247news Taraba Correspondent. He lives and works from Jalingo, the state capital.

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