Another Kenyan preacher jailed for ‘mass slaughter’ as cult fatalities surpass 100.


According to the interior minister, reports of a “mass killing of his followers” led to the arrest of a Kenyan televangelist on Thursday, and authorities were also investigating into dozens more homicides suspected to be tied to a religious cult in the same region.

At the same time that Pastor Ezekiel Odero’s arrest made news, it was reported that 103 people had died in a separate cult probe that rocked the nation and fueled calls for a crackdown on religious fringe groups.

Odero, clothed in white robes and clutching a thick black book, did not answer reporters’ inquiries as he was led inside a police station by a uniformed officer.

Officials evacuated scores of people “holed up” inside Odero’s New Life Prayer Centre and Church in the seaside town of Mavueni in the country’s southeast near the Indian Ocean, according to Minister Kithure Kindiki.

Odero was also “being processed to face criminal charges related to the mass killing of his followers,” according to Kindiki, but he did not specify how many people were slain. He did not discuss whether or whether the two occurrences were linked.

According to regional authority Rhoda Onyancha, “allegations of deaths that have been occurring at his premises and reported in various morgues or institutions” led to Odero’s imprisonment.

Mavueni is around 40 miles (66 kilometers) from the Shakahola forest, where cult leader Paul Mackenzie is claimed to have ordered his followers to starve to death in preparation for the April 15th end of the world.

Mackenzie has been detained by police since April 14, and she has yet to respond to the claims against her in public.

Authorities have recovered the bodies of 95 members of his so-called Good News International Church in shallow graves in the woods since last Friday. Eight more were found alive and hungry but died later.

According to the Kenyan Red Cross, more than 300 people are still missing, making this one of the worst cult-related catastrophes in recent memory.

Following the revelation that Mackenzie was arrested last month on suspicion of murdering two children by starvation and suffocation, and then released on bail, some Kenyan lawmakers chastised the security services for failing to prevent the mass deaths in the Shakahola forest.

In a statement, the Kenyan court claimed that a disciplinary commission was evaluating the case files to see if any judicial officials or workers had committed impropriety.

Mackenzie was jailed many times starting in 2017 for charges such as child abuse and radicalization, according to the statement. It said that he was judged not guilty of some crimes for unclear reasons, while others were either abandoned or not pursued.


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