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Fatoyinbo explains decision to shun PFN panel on rape allegations

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Founder of Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA) Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo Friday said he shunned the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) panel investigating the rape allegations against him by celebrity photographer, Busola Dakolo for legal reasons.

“We recall that when Pastor Fatoyinbo was invited by a phone call a 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," media aide to Fatoyinbo, Ademola Adetuberu, said in a statement.

Adetuberu said Fatoyinbo failed to honour the panel’s invitations because his lawyers told him that the sitting might be partial.

PFN Thursday said the panel could not conclude the investigation of the allegations by Busola Dakolo against Fatoyinbo, whom she said raped her twice as a teenager.

Busola in June said that Fatoyinbo, nicknamed ‘Gucci Pastor,’ raped her for the first time at her parent’s home and at another time in a secluded road path.

The Christian body, however, expressed disappointment in the COZA pastor for declining invitations of the panel.

But Adetuberu said Fatoyinbo will only appear before the panel after the police probe into the allegation was concluded.

He said it is disappointing that the Christian body would "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,” Adetuberu said.

Prior to the commencement of investigations by the Nigeria police and the PFN, Fatoyinbo had denied the rape allegations and threatened to sue his accusers.

The rape allegations against Fatoyinbo had prompted hundreds of protesters to march on COZA premises in Lagos and Abuja, demanding the resignation and prosecution of the pastor.

The pastor later took a leave of absence from the church days after the allegations and protest.

Fatoyinbo Sunday, August 4 returned to the pulpit, about a month after he stepped down.


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