Popular Nigerian Gospel singer Mercy Chinwo has blasted Nigerian churches for making business out of the gospel.
Recently a letter from well-known Living in Christ International, aka Winner’s Chapel, dismissed its’ pastor for not generating money as expected. This has gone viral on social media platforms in the country.
In a Facebook post Madam Chinwo said, “Here are three ways to set up a corporate organization according to law in Nigeria and the law governing it is called The Companies and Allied Matters Act (Chapter C20) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 (CAMA 1990).”
She noted that according to this law, before you can be a corporate organization, you either incorporate a company as a Private or Public Limited Liability Company under part A of the law or you REGISTER it as a business name under part B of the law or as an Incorporated Trustee, which includes political parties, NGOs and Trusts.
She is quoted as saying, “A church is registered as an Incorporated Trustee under part C and it is seen in law that they are charities and because they are supposed to be doing things to help humanity or a charitable cause, the law excludes them from paying tax. You remember what happened when the Federal Government insisted they must pay tax and that they should not have one person heading its Board for life? This is because the Government was seeing that they were running as a business.”
She continued with, “When you are called as a man of God, it’s assumed that it’s a spiritual and divine call. That call was not measured in “growth Index”. A man of God is seen to be ordained by God. Such a person is not supposed to be under some mortal growth targets. Does God call someone and give them “growth index or target?”
The Nigerian singer said, “According to some of the reasons the Federal Government gave as a reason to amend the law and require churches to pay tax was that they saw that people are running organizations registered under part C especially churches as a business and hiding under the cover of church to avoid tax. They also saw clearly that the heads of these organizations registered under part C of the law run their organizations without a corporate governance code which, amongst other things, should have clear tenure of the head of the organization. So a G.O. or founder heads a church till he dies and in some cases bequeath it to his children. No internal corporate governance rules!So now tell me, was the government wrong? “
Meanwhile, she said, “Until Nigerian remove ethnicity and religion from clear definition making, they will continue to be where they are as a country. Describing the words Growth index, which is in the letter as very funny.”