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Church Leaders On Trial For Embezzling $40 In Singapore

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Ho Yeow Sun

— Singapore opened a long-anticipated corruption trial Wednesday of six church leaders accused of embezzling more than $40 million to fund the pop music career of the wife of their evangelical movement’s founder.

City Harvest Church faithful queued at a Singapore court overnight and packed the public gallery to show support for the accused who prosecutors say diverted the congregation’s funds into “sham” investments to advance the career of aspiring star Ho Yeow Sun, popularly known as Sun Ho.

The church with affiliates in neighboring Malaysia and other countries is one of Singapore’s richest and biggest, with membership of more than 30,000. It is known in the region for staging large-scale, elaborate services resembling pop concerts which are conducted by Ho’s husband, Kong Hee.

Ho is not on trial but turned up in court Wednesday dressed in a black leather jacket, skinny pants, stiletto boots and sporting streaky blonde hair and grey contact lenses. Her husband chatted confidently with his lawyers. Kong is charged with conspiracy to commit criminal breach of trust.

Also charged are church pastor Tan Ye Peng, church members Chew Eng Han and Lam Leng Hung, and accountants Serina Wee Gek Yin and Sharon Tan Shao Yuen. The six, who have yet to say how they will plea, could face prison terms ranging from 10 to 20 years.

The prosecution’s opening statement ridiculed the contention of church leaders that pop music was a tool of evangelism that would help spread God’s message. It said Ho recorded and launched secular music albums to influence people “who would never choose to step foot into a church to listen to a preacher.”

Investments by the church in two companies, Xtron Productions and Firna, were in substance fake transactions that were orchestrated by the accused who were all involved in the planning and financing of Ho’s music career, according to prosecutors.

State media reported that 24 million Singapore dollars ($19 million) was channeled through Xtron and Firna and another S$26 million was misappropriated to cover up the initial sum.

Prosecutors allege that the falsification of church accounts occurred in 2009.

Singapore’s media have painted Ho, who is in her early 40s, as an aspiring superstar who hoped for international fame to help spread her church’s influence. She collaborated on a song and raunchy music video `China Wine’ with rapper Wyclef Jean in 2007 and attended the 46th annual Grammy Awards ceremony in 2004. But accusations of impropriety and public disdain have since rained down on Ho, her ambitions and the church.

Ho was reinstated as executive director of City Harvest Church on Monday by the Commissioner of Charities after a review found she had not contributed to mismanagement of the church.

A former church accountant testified Wednesday how she had been instructed to take care of Xtron’s accounts because it didn’t have its own accounting department

-Huffpost

 

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Tinubu finally speaks on Lekki shooting, tells Buhari to find culprits

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Tinubu finally speaks on Lekki shooting, tells Buhari to find culprits

Former Governor of Lagos state and the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chieftain, Bola Ahmed Tinubu has commented on the Lekki toll gate shooting that left many dead and several others injured.

The Lagos politician who was interviewed via telephone by a Channels TV reporter, Olu Philips, shared his shock over the shooting and also revealed that he is ready to complain to the highest authorities.

Contrary to people’s predictions, Tinubu however denied ordering the shooting and also stated that he can only control his security guard. He again reiterated that he will never be part of any group that uses live ammunition against protesters.

Insisting that he has always been an activist, the APC Chieftain expressed sympathy for the victims of the incident and advised the federal government to “fish out whoever gave the order (for the shooting) and put them on trial”.

He then recalled how he was falsely accused of being behind #EndSARS protests. Tinubu who noted that he doesn’t believe that Buhari ordered the shooting, appealed for calm over the incident. He also denied having a stake in the Lekki toll gate or suffering a loss due to the continous blockage of the area by #EndSARS protesters.

He said,

“It is early hours of the morning, there’s no way I can talk to the authorities or wake them up now. I have tried to reach the NSA, I have tried to reach the head of the army.

“You don’t call the president at this hour, but I strongly condemn the act. There are other means of settling or dispersing protest. Why would they use live bullets? There are rubber bullets.

“I am not even sure yet they are Nigerian army, I am not sure how well the uniforms of the army are controlled. But that is not as critical as the bloodshed that has occurred.

“We have lost our sleep, we have lost our peace of mind, (and) we just have to deal with it.”

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Buhari Will Come Up With Solutions In Few Hours -Major General Babagana Monguno

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Buhari Will Come Up With Solutions In Few Hours -Major General Babagana Monguno

It has been reported that the National Security, Major General Babagana Monguno (retd), on Thursday said the President Muhammadu Buhari, would come up with solutions to the ongoing violence erupting in parts of the country ”in the next few hours”.

Babagana Monguno Says Buhari Is Coming Up With Solutions

According to Punch, May Babagana did not disclose the solutions, he said they would communicate to parties concerned.

Mongunu revealed this in an interview with State House correspondents at the end of a meeting of the National Security presided over the President.

The NSA also did not disclose whether the President will announce the solutions through a national broadcast.

He said,

“The President himself, I have just left his office, is also going to deal with these issues in a specific manner apart from what has just taken place in council.

I believe in the next couple of hours, Mr President will come up with certain solutions that will be agreeable to the entire federation.”

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“Please If Anything Happens To Me, It Wasn’t Ordinary” – Ex BBN Ifu Ennada

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“Please If Anything Happens To Me, It Wasn’t Ordinary” – Ex BBN Ifu Ennada

Nigerian reality TV star and actress, Ifu Ennada has disclosed that she is being threatened over her involvement with the ongoing #endsars protests.

The former BBNAIJA housemate told her fans that if anything bad happens to her, they should be aware that it isn’t ordinary, because she’s getting threat messages from anonymous people.

She wrote;

“They are threatening me! Guys the people where I live are getting calls that I should stop posting about these things.

Please if anything happens to me, just know that it wasn’t ordinary. I’m not posting things that aren’t happening or things that others are not already posting”.

She further mentioned that her location is currently off, and she isn’t home, so no one can trace where she is.

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