The Federal Capital Territory Police Command has arrested Pastor Uche Aigbe of House on the Rock Cathedral in Abuja over the unlawful possession of firearm.
He was arrested alongside the Church Chief Security Officer and one Inspector Musa Audu, according to the spokesperson for the Federal Capital Territory, Josephine Adeh.
The cleric, in a viral video on Sunday, was seen brandishing an assault rifle during a church service.
The police had launched a probe into the incident and subsequently announced the pastor’s arrest late Monday.
“The pastor whose message and demonstrations were tagged inciting by various media and social media users was arrested in the early hours of Monday 13th February 2023, along side the Church Chief Security Officer and one Inspector Musa Audu, who was on duty on the said day and had unprofessionally released his rifle to the said pastor without permission or recourse to police authority.
“While discrete investigation has commenced, members of the public are urged to shun actions or utterances that is in breach of extant laws as the law is trite and all violators will be adequately sanctioned,” the police stated.
Action Regrettable — Church
Meanwhile, the church, in a statement on Monday, said the pastor preached a message about fighting the good fight with spiritual weapons and carried “an unloaded gun” to illustrate his message on ‘Guarding your Faith.’
House On The Rock said Uche has been a leader in the church since 1999 and has always shown exemplary leadership.
“However, he realises that even with the best of intentions, carrying a gun to illustrate his message was ill-advised and regrettable,” the statement read.
“Without hesitation, Pastor Uche has acknowledged the gravity of his actions and apologises unreservedly for them.
“As a church, House On The Rock rejects all forms of violence and we stand on the good news gospel of Jesus Christ which embraces peace and goodwill for all of mankind.
“We are cooperating fully with the authorities as they carry out their investigations into this incident, and we will continue to engage internally to ensure this break in protocol does not happen again.”