Founder of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA) Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo has explained he shunned the panel set up by the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) to probe the rape allegations against him by celebrity photographer, Busola Dakolo because of legal advice.
He said he failed to honour the panel’s invitations because his lawyers realised the sitting might be partial.
The PFN announced on Thursday that its probe into the allegations against Fatoyinbo was inconclusive because the preacher refused to appear before it after several invitations.
Senior Assistant to the COZA Pastor, Ademola Adetuberu, in a statement in Abuja on Friday, disclosed that the legal advice was also premised on the statement issued by the PFN President, Bishop Felix Omobude, “where our Pastor was publicly disowned.”
According to him: “We recall that when Pastor Fatoyinbo was invited by a phone call few days ago by Pastor Akinola Akinwale, who is the National Administrative Secretary of PFN, we explained that our Pastor would not honour the invitation due to legal advice hinged on the ongoing police investigation.
“The legal advice was also premised on the press statement issued and personally signed by the PFN President, Bishop Felix Omobude, where our Pastor was publicly disowned.
“Based on the foregoing, we are convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that the PFN was already prejudiced and may not conduct an impartial session.
“According to the report, Rev. Omobude, whom we hold in high esteem, went further to crucify our Pastor without seeking to know his side of the story on the matter.
“With all due respect, we consider this a prejudicial position in dispensing justice and fairness.”
He added: “Even our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ was given an opportunity for a fair hearing by the Kangaroo panel set up with the prime motive of condemning Him to death.”
He however denied there were written invitations from the panel or PFN leadership aside from the phone calls requesting for his presence.
Fatoyinbo promised to appear before the panel as soon as the police probe into the allegation was concluded.
The statement clarified: “Once the police investigation is over, our Pastor is ready to honour the invitation.
We have also been legally advised to deploy judicial intervention to clear our Pastor as soon as possible, and the process has commenced in earnest.”