There is a Celestial Church parish in the UK called Harton Street Parish. Over the last few months, members of the church have been divided over some allegations, which has gone back and forth. In
June, Counsellor Funmi responded to the allegation of alleged stolen funds. An online blog, Instablog9ja on Instagram posted a story and Counsellor Funmi reacted to the malicious video of her dancing around on social media where those she called despicable haters in her church were calling her a thief while Metropolitan Police rescued she and her aunty out of the hands of these people. She responded to this video And another group, who are members of the church have since responded.
Titled: RESPONSE TO FUNMI ADEMILUA’S ALLEGATIONS OF CCC HARTON STR. PARISH UK MEMBERS IN ARTICLE TITLED ‘REBUTTAL ON DEFAMATORY VIDEO CIRCULATING ONLINE’ ON THE 19th JUNE 2021 IN CITY PEOPLE NIGERIAN MAGAZINE.
“We are writing as members of the church to contest the story and actions of this individual and the dubious information that she is giving to media outlets and Bloggers. As much as she was once an embraced member, her continual lies attempt to deceive the public with false leadership.
She has been consistently exaggerating her role in the church, proclaiming herself to be the Chairman of the Trustees to the public. Unfortunately this is not true as she was never elected to this post, but has forged official elected parochial committees and doctored leadership lists at the Charity Commission website. During 2018 harvest for example, Funmi Ademilua went to print out a flyer which presents her image as the harvest chairlady, however she was not the chairlady. The committee heard is another role she has presented herself. She has also been parading as the Financial Secretary of the church, again, this is not true. She was given the title of assistant Financial Secretary only, supporting our finance head on key points. We have been made aware that she has a history of misinformation outside the church as well since she has also titled herself as Councillor (a community leader at Lewisham local Council in London) which is again, untrue. This can be viewed here: (https://lewisham.gov.uk/mayorandcouncil/wards click the list of the councillors to verify if she was an elected Councillor. It is clear that Funmi Ademilua has a habit of being grandiose and known for constantly seeking for power, position and money in the church and community as a whole whilst she does not contribute to church in any form since she claimed to be a member of CCC Harton Str. Parish in UK.
(1) MC Funmi arranged a meeting with the Elders of the Church, the Head of Diocese (HOD), the Deputy and others. The purpose of the meeting was about the charity account which was due to be submitted post-COVID-19 lockdown. After two weeks she (Funmi) was given all the documents to complete the account, but we had no information regarding the church account. Therefore Funmi was trusted by Evang Oyedokun with all the necessary documents regarding the church account at the time. If there were any discrepancies he would not have handed those documents over to her to continue her investigation.
(2) Regarding the changes to the account, Evang. Oyedokun and the caretaker committee were put in place by the church when the Executive members of the parochial committee stopped attending church from 23/03/2020 due to COVID-19 and, at the same time, there were insufficient funds to cover the church costs. As a result the parochial committee transferred £3000 from the church saving account to pay all the due bills and avoid a financial crisis. Unfortunately none of the members, including Funmi Ademilua attended the meeting and this is what brought about the Caretaker Committee. As a more senior team, the Caretaker Committee is able to resolve financial issues including changing church signatories. This was decided at the stated meeting by few representatives who include Mr Oyedokun and Mc Oyegunle.
(3) Regarding the video footage which has been viewed: On the day in question which was 30/05/21 Funmi Ademilua called the police three times to falsely report a conflict in the church meanwhile, a peaceful sermon was ongoing. We thank God that after her initial call the secretary intervened and the police left the premises. However, after service Funmi Ademilua called the police a second time and told them to arrest Mr Oyedokun for not allowing her to take out the church money – which she was not authorised to do and attempted to do in secret. Funmi then called the police a third time and lied that she was held hostage – she did not report to them that she was trying to leave with the church’s money or that, in reality; she was sitting inside the church with Mrs Fashina and MC Oyegunle chatting normally. Below I will explain the occurrences following her police calls:
(4) Funmi Ademilua has never before been involved with the counting of the church’s offering money, but that day she signalled to Mc Sosinmi to go out. As Mc Sosinmi normally counts the money this was very suspicious and it was clear that they had been working together. Following this MC Funmi and MC Fashina also came to count the church money – which again – was unusual as they haven’t counted it in years since they have attended Harton Str. Parish. Additionally Funmi does not contribute to the church funds not even annual harvest levy. As this is not compulsory and people have different circumstances this has not been an issue; however that did make her sudden interest in the church money suspicious. As a result Evang Oyedokun approached the women to take the money back to the altar, but as he attempted to remove the money tray she grabbed all the notes from the tray, and put them in her handbag. Some choir members also witnessed what happened and unable to get out of the church with the money she immediately called the Police with the false report that Evang Oyedokun assaulted her and took money from her. This was quickly dismissed as he told them we have CCTV in the church and they saw for themselves. The third time she called police and said she was being held hostage and when police came we told them what happened so they went to search her. They said that she didn’t have the money however they couldn’t confirm that she did not pass the money to MC Fashina – as was reported by MC Oyegunle. So when the police were escorting them to the car the whole church chanted ‘Ole ‘to them. This is the summary of events in the video.
(5) At this point the whole members of the church were angry and stated that she needed to return the money before she leaves the premises. MC Funmi was not truthful, and she was never harassed, assaulted nor threatened, but she continued to disrespect and undermine the actual active trustees and humiliated the Shepherd by serving him a void letter of termination as well as falsely adding other member’s names to the letter without their knowledge. Meanwhile the shepherd who has spent over 4 years in the Church had already announced his departure to the congregation which is scheduled at the end of July. By delivering a letter of termination Funmi wanted to present herself as the person who terminated his appointment at the church. In reality, this would be impossible because appointments and terminations are directed by leadership bodies in Nigeria. Therefore no individual could terminate a shepherd’s appointment except the pastor by whom he was appointed.
All the members of the church are now aware of her plans to disrupt the church and our peace. Her ongoing slurs, insults and aggressive actions against the Shepherd and other committee members in the meeting as well as consistent false allegations and misrepresentation have been evidence of this. Until this day the money that she grabbed in the church on 30/05/21 has not been recovered, nor has it been submitted to the church account. One of the most damaging effects of poor leadership is when it leads a team to incivility, micro-aggressions or outright bullying. Where incivility goes unchallenged because ‘that’s ‘just the way they are’ or we think a colleague is being’ too sensitive’; We become complicit in creating a culture of intolerance. We are therefore not acting on our Christian values.
Snr Evan S. Oyedokun (C/O Caretaker Committee) , Leader G. Shaba (Chariman), MC Bunmi Adepegba (Financial Secretary), MC Adeyemi (Elder), Prophetess Jinadu (Elder), Prophetess F. Afolabi (Elder), Prophetess H. Oyedokun , Prophetess Banke
What triggered the response of this group was the rebuttal of the Defamatory video circulating Online By Counselor Funmi Ademilua. It reads:
Rebuttal on Defamatory Video Circulating Online By COUNSELOR FUNMI ADEMILUA
The circulation of a video clip on several social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube & Instagram) has come to my attention. On the 3rd of June, 2021 a video was posted on a blogging site on Instagram called “Instablog9ja”, this video carried the caption; “Alleged Stolen Funds: UK Police called as Nigerian church members clash”. In this video, a fellow church member who is known as MC Fashina and I are being escorted out of The Celestial Church of Christ, Harton street, Archdiocese by the Metropolitan Police, this is accompanied by screams of the word “Ole” which is the Yoruba term for thief. This video first came to my attention on Sunday, 30th of May, 2021.
This video has since been viewed on social media sites & microblogging sites by over 2 million people. This malicious video which was recorded and illegally distributed on various social media sites without my consent are defamatory in nature and have been framed to paint an untrue story by muddling it with the actual facts.
I am going on record to deny all allegations and suggestions that I had at any point during my service as a member of The Celestial Church of Christ, Harton Street, Archdiocese and as a member of the Church Trustees which I served as the Financial Secretary, stole or embezzled any funds from the church. The video posted alleging I was being arrested or invited by the Metropolitan Police for questioning with regards to stealing church funds is false & a malicious lie from the pit of hell.
The following members of The Celestial Church of Christ, Harton Street, Archdiocese; Prophet Daniel Dickson, Evangelist Olusegun Oyedokun & Prophetess Abosede Oyedokun, Gbolabo Kayode Shaba, Annette Oladunni Adeyemi, Sister Banke, Bunmi Adepegba, MCP Funmi Afolabi and others are responsible for this harassment & defamation. The genesis of this issue
began when Church Elders illegally removed members of the Church Trustees with the support of the trustees Chairman, Mr. Gbolabo Kayode Shaba on Sunday 9th August 2020 without any solid grounds for removal. Fast forward to a few months later, I received a call from the Charity Commision regarding the church’s annual account being overdue for filing. Upon my investigation on this matter, I discovered that Evangelist Olusegun Oyedokun and 2 other people who are not a part of the Church Trustees made changes to the church account without informing the Trustees or the Charity Commision. As a Trustee and the Financial Secretary, I discovered financial misappropriation followed by lack of trust and accountability being perpetuated. I wrote a letter to Evangelist Olusegun Oyedokun for clarification and more information with regards to this development. Rather than offer a response to clarify the situation, I was threatened, harassed, assaulted and verbally abused by Evangelist Olusegun Oyedokun, his wife and their faction (mentioned above) led by Prophet Daniel Dickson, whose appointment as the church shepherd expired since January 8th, 2021. They held me hostage in a room at the church premises for over 2 hours. It took the intervention of the Metropolitan Police to rescue me, hence the video which is currently circulating on social media.
I will be very reluctant to call Evangelist Olusegun Oyedokun a thief, but investigations are currently ongoing on the church account, which he now manages without any audit or supervision. I am requesting that an independent investigation should also be carried out to ensure that everything is brought to light.
I never walked away from my role as Church Trustee at the church & I’ll continue to serve in this capacity until my tenure ends. I am a community leader in Lewisham Borough where The Celestial Church of Christ, Harton Street, Archdiocese is located. I am also an envoy for youths and a counsellor by profession, I do philanthropy work, helping and supporting disadvantaged people across the world via The Good Samaritan Foundation.
Counselor Funmi Ademilua