Monday, April 19, 2021

TB Joshua orders congregation to pray for YouTube

Pastor TB Joshua, has called on his followers to “pray for YouTube” after the platform blocked his Emmanuel TV channel over allegations of hate speech against LGBT people.

The founder of The Synagogue Church of All Nations, a Christian megachurch in Lagos, is one of Africa’s most influential preachers with a large following on TV and social media.

“I want you to help me pray for YouTube,” said Temitope Balogun Joshua, known as TB Joshua, in his Sunday service shared on Facebook.

Last week, YouTube closed the pastor’s channel with more than 1.8 million subscribers and 600 million views.

The UK-based rights organisation OpenDemocracy said it was behind the closure.

“In response to our enquiries about TB Joshua´s controversial exorcisms, YouTube terminated his channel,” it said on its website.

Joshua has already mobilised his followers to inundate YouTube with protests and appeals

“We strongly oppose all forms of hate speech!” he wrote on Facebook. “We have had a long and fruitful relationship with YouTube and believe this decision was made in haste.”

Facebook also removed several videos on Joshua’s page, which has 5.6 million followers.

The moves were criticised online in Nigeria where the evangelical community is powerful and churches have tens of thousands of followers.