General News of Monday, 9 October 2017
Baffour Nyantakyi Tutu Boateng, Krontihene of the New Juaben Traditional Council in the Eastern Region, has described internationally acclaimed Ghanaian evangelist, Dr Lawrence Tetteh and Bishop Yaw Adu as “false prophets who are only interested in causing fear and panic to dupe people.”
The two men claimed in the media that the Nsukwao River, which turned red Saturday in Koforidua, the regional capital, was a sign of the anger of God towards the traditional council and faceless operatives of the National Security to stop a mega crusade dubbed, ‘Koforidua for Christ.’
Residents of Koforidua on Saturday morning woke up to discover a complete change in the colour of the river that runs through parts of the town, causing fear and panic among them.
The Nsukwa River changed from its original colourless nature to a ‘blood-like’ colour, making the residents think that the Biblical days of water changing into blood in Egypt had visited the town.
Residents, who were shocked by the news, trooped to the river in their numbers to catch a glimpse of what had happened, reading different superstitious meanings into it.
Rev. Tetteh’s intervention
The panicky incident, which caused a lot of tension, pushed Dr. Lawrence Tetteh, who was having a crusade in the town with Bishop Yaw Adu – founder of House of Prayer Ministries – and some church members, to quickly rush to the scene to offer prayers. They attributed the change in colour to the wrath of God that had visited the people of Koforidua because of their sins.
Earlier, the turnout for the crusade was reportedly low due to the challenges the church faced in holding the event.
Dr. Lawrence Tetteh said, “…We cast every demon; we say Koforidua shall be peaceful. There will not be bloodshed; there will not be anything evil; the people of Koforidua will be blessed.”
He added, “As we see this thing in the river, the river is looking like blood. Whatever it is and wherever it comes from, we bless it in Jesus’ name, Amen!”
Bishop Yaw Adu, who was interpreting the words of Dr Tetteh, also said God had “turned the water into blood” because the traditional authorities placed a ban on crusades in the town as a result of the Akwantukese festival, which would be celebrated by the people of Koforidua.
Chiefs fight back
In a furious reaction, the Krontihene of New Juaben, Baffuor Tutu Boateng Nyantakyi, at an emergency press briefing, described the claims by the pastors as deceptive and baseless.
Baffour Tutu said the incident had nothing to do with miracles but rather a criminal offence and that the traditional council wanted the police to arrest the suspect.
According to the angry sub-chief, a tie-and-dye manufacturer based in Tema (name not known yet) has a factory at Koforidua-Zongo Sentiments, behind the stream which links to the Weija Dam in Accra.
Baffour Nyantakyi said based on eyewitnesses’ accounts at the scene, some ladies scrubbed the factory premises and poured the red dyeing powder into the river at about 4:00 am on Saturday, thereby polluting it.
“I have personally gone round and realised this is not blood. The Nsukwa River has not turned into blood; it is just colour from somebody doing his tie-and-dye,” he stated.
He emphasised further, “It has nothing to do with the Akwantukesie that we are going to celebrate. It has nothing to do with human blood; it has nothing to do with goat blood.”
The chief said his outfit has summoned the factory owner to appear before the Traditional Council to answer questions on why he polluted the water.
He added that the police had been invited to investigate the matter for the person who polluted the river to be arrested and prosecuted because the “river joins the Densu and this will cause pollution to other river bodies which serve as sources of potable water.”
Chief Inspector Ebenezer Sekyi told the media that a tie-and-dye powder was poured into the river by a manufacturer which they have been able to gather from the factory, adding that they were still looking into the matter and would take the appropriate action in due course.
Meanwhile, a clear demonstration by a native of the area on how the water was polluted – which was captured on video currently trending on social media – shows that the water body was polluted by the red dyeing substance and nothing superstitious.
However, the Regional NADMO acting director, Mr Kodua, in a statement, has condemned the absurd behaviour of the suspected persons currently at large and called on the police to help find them.