Until his arrest, 45-year-old Delight Arinze Okorie, told Sunday Sun reporter in Owerri that he was the pastor-in-charge of Watered Ground Ministry.
He said: “I have been in pastoral ministry for over 10 years. When
some of my members or the friends they bring, come to tell me about
their problems, I always give them fake prophecies. If I discover that
they have money, I use the opportunity to rob them by setting them up
with the fake prophecies.”
As Sunday Sun further learnt in an interview with the
Commissioner of Police, Imo State, Mr. Taiwo Lakanu, this was the
strategy Okorie deployed in deceiving, robbing and attempting to murder
one member of the church, 35-year-old Mrs. Chioma Oleka at Atta in
Ihennasa, Njaba Local Government Area, Imo State, by falsely claiming
that she was possessed with a mermaid (marine) spirit.
Lakanu explained that on May 25, 2016, Okorie lured Oleka to Nwangele
river, where she was to ostensibly undergo special deliverance prayer.
The lady drove her Lexus SUV with a Rivers State registration number,
KPR 243HF to keep the appointment for prayers and deliverance.
Hear Okorie say what followed thereafter: “As we were praying on the
bridge, I went to the back of the vehicle and picked up a machete. I
gave her several cuts all over her body with the intention to kill her.
Then I pushed her from the top of the bridge into the river for her to
drown. Some members of my gang, who pretend to be members of my church,
who went with me then escaped with the SUV, when we sighted a police
Unfortunately for Okorie and the gang, Oleka miraculously survived
the vicious attack and fall into the river as she did not drown. Rather
she pretended to have died.
Recalling her fortuitous survival of the horrendous experience she passed through, Oleka told Sunday Sun:
“Before this thing happened I had been attending Watered Ground
Ministry, the church headed by Pastor Okorie. He always prophesied in
the church and one day he said that I had a mermaid (marine or
mammywater) spirit. He said I had to go for special deliverance prayer
not knowing that he wanted to rob and murder me. During the prayer
session, he suddenly pushed me from the top of the bridge into the
river. He gave me machete cuts thinking that I would die. But a police
patrol team rescued me, took me to the hospital. I think I have learnt
my lesson, that there are many false pastors all over the place; we need
After their successful escape from the crime scene, Okorie and his
gang members continued their operations for several months thinking
that the chapter had been closed on what they did to Oleka.
However, providence was patiently waiting to expose them. That day
arrived when Oleka began to recover from the attack while still in the
hospital. When she was strong enough to talk with police detectives
investigating the case, she recounted what happened and gave the police
the registration number of the car. For a while, the police kept Okorie
under surveillance and then moved in to arrest him. During
interrogation, he sang like a canary and revealed his alleged past
escapades in crime, robbery, kidnapping and murder.
With information obtained from Okorie and the other members of his
gang, the police recovered the Lexus SUV as well as the arms and
ammunition of the gang.