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World News

Nigerian pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo steps down over rape allegations

by Eno Adeogun

Busola Dakolo, who is married to the musician Timi Dakolo, claimed that Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo had raped her in an exclusive interview with YNaija, a Nigerian news website.

The series of videos went viral on social media, triggering a similar #MeToo movement that was instead dubbed #NotInMyChurch.

 

Pastor Fatoyinbo, founder and senior pastor of the megachurch Commonwealth of Zion Assembly (COZA) in Abuja, has denied the allegations but said he was taking a "leave of absence from the pulpit" because it was the "right thing to do". 

Nigerians have since taken to social media to share their own stories of sexual abuse and harassment from church officials and members.

 

Since the allegations were made public, many members of the church have supported him using the hashtag #IStandWithBiodunFatoyinbo.

Protests occurred on Sunday at different branches of COZA with people holding placards that read "Thou shall not rape".

 

The pastor announced he was stepping aside from church duties via his Instagram page.

 

He wrote: "The past few days have been sobering for me. I have taken time to pray and seek spiritual counsel from Christian leaders around the world, who feel very concerned about the ongoing reports in the media."

It is not clear if a police investigation is underway.

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