A Nigerian-owned church in the UK has been shutdown over fraudulent activities
The High Court of the United Kingdom (UK) has ordered the closure of Salvation Proclaimer Ministries Limited, popularly known as SPAC Nation, a church owned by Nigerian-born Tobi Adegboyega, due to alleged financial mismanagement and a lack of transparency in its activities.
Following a High Court order by Judge Burton, the result was announced in a statement by The Insolvency Service, a UK government body.
“Salvation Proclaimer Ministries Limited, more commonly known as SPAC Nation, was wound up in the public interest in the High Court on 9 June 2022 before Judge Burton.
“The court heard that SPAC Nation was incorporated in 2012, a charity set up to advance Christianity. Much of its charitable work was based in London, working particularly with vulnerable people, youth, and offenders”, the statement read.
The church did not have its own base and hired venues across London to hold services at significant expense, according to the court. SPAC Nation’s financial statements set aside £610,000 for rent expenditure, but the church did not have its own base and hired venues across London to hold services at significant expense, according to the court.
While the church first received great reviews and media attention, evidence acquired from allegations made by former employees indicated otherwise, according to Edna Okhiria, the Insolvency Service’s lead investigator.
“While SPAC Nation claimed it had noble intentions to support vulnerable and young people, our enquiries uncovered a different side of the charity.
“There were clear concerns around how the church group managed its affairs and SPAC Nation failed to properly account for income received from donations and other expenditures,” he said.
The Metropolitan Police and the Charity Commission initiated inquiries into the church’s activities after complaints about it surfaced – originally reported by HuffPost UK.
There were also allegations that the church’s pastors encouraged teenage members of the membership to sell their own blood to generate finances, a practice known as “bleeding for seed.”
In June 2020, SPAC Nation was renamed Nxtion Family, a month after head pastor Tobi Adeboyega announced his departure as leader, however he still maintain the leadership of the organization.
“The Insolvency Service received complaints about SPAC Nation before conducting its own confidential investigations into the church group’s operations,” according to the statement.
According to the statement, the church failed to follow statutory standards and made assertions without supporting evidence.
“Investigators spoke with Adedapo Olugbenga Adegboyega, also known as Dapo Adegboyega or Pastor Dapo, one of the company’s directors.”
During interviews, Adegboyega claimed that the church had over 2,000 members and 200 ordained ministers and pastors, but he provided no evidence to back up his claims.
SPAC Nation failed to comply with or only partially complied with statutory requirements, including supplying data to back claimed donations and accounting records to support £1.87 million in expenditure, according to further investigations.
“Salvation Proclaimer Ministries Limited was wound-up after the court concluded the company operated with a lack of transparency, filed suspicious or incorrect accounts, and was insolvent at the time of the hearing.
“It was also recognised that the company provided inconsistent information to the Insolvency Service and Charity Commission, and failed to deliver adequate accounting records.
“The company remains subject to a statutory inquiry by the Charity Commission, which is examining financial, governance and safeguarding matters at the charity.
“The court recognised the severity of SPAC Nation’s actions and this sends a strong message that proper records and accounts must be maintained, even if you’re a charity,” the statement added.