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TB Joshua: 20 Years Of Scandals, Fake Miracles, Sexual Abuse And Torture Revealed In BBC Documentary

TB Joshua: 20 Years Of Scandals, Fake Miracles, Sexual Abuse And Torture Revealed In BBC Documentary

Late Nigerian preacher Temitope Balogun Joshua, better known as T.B. Joshua has dominated headlines after his church’s dubious activities were exposed by not just former members of his church but also his former employees and own daughter too.

The preacher, who at some point was the most recognizable – and widely adored – African preacher with millions of devotees from around the world, has now been exposed as a man who was rooted deep in misogyny, torture, sexual abuse, financial corruption, and mega coverups.

A BBC investigation has revealed that the charismatic Nigerian leader of one of the world’s biggest evangelical churches secretly committed sexual crimes on a mass scale.

Spanning three continents, the investigation unearthed heinous activities associated with the leader of the Synagogue Church of All Nations (Scoan), a Nigerian megachurch whose influence affected millions of Christians desperate for healing, financial success, deliverance, and spiritual awakening.

The preacher, who died in 2021 at the age of 57, has been exposed as a man who engaged in widespread abuse, torture, and cruelty over a period spanning over 20 years.

His daughter Ajoke was the first to reach out to the BBC to expose her late father’s barbarism, admitting that she was a victim of the savagery her father inflicted on hundreds of people.

“My dad had fear, constant fear. He was very afraid that someone would speak up,” Ajoke told the BBC.

Now aged 27, Ajoke lives in hiding and has dropped her surname “Joshua” – the BBC did not publish her new name.

Little is known about Ajoke’s birth mother, who was believed to be one of TB Joshua’s congregants – she said she was raised by Evelyn, Joshua’s widow, from as early as she can remember.

One day, after she was suspended from school for a misdemeanor, everything changed. A local journalist wrote an article referring to her as the illegitimate child of TB Joshua and that’s when she was pulled out of school and taken to the Scoan compound in Lagos.

“I was made to move to the disciples’ room. I didn’t volunteer to be a disciple. I was made to join,” she says.

The disciples were an elite group of dedicated followers who served TB Joshua and lived with him inside the maze-like structure of the church. They came from all over the world, many staying at the compound for decades.

They lived under a strict set of rules: forbidden to sleep for more than a few hours at a time, prohibited from using their phones or having access to their emails, and forced to call TB Joshua “Daddy”.

“The disciples were both brainwashed and enablers. Everybody was just acting based on command – like zombies. Nobody was questioning anything,” she confessed. 

Just a child, Ajoke would not follow the rules like the other disciples: she refused to stand up when the pastor came into the room and rebelled against the severe sleeping orders.

The abuse started soon after.


The abuse escalated to a different scale when she was aged 17 and confronted her dad about “accounts, first hand, of people who had experienced sexual abuse”.

“I saw female disciples go up to his room. They were going away for hours. I was hearing things: ‘Oh this happened to me. He tried sleeping with me.’ Too many people were saying the same thing,” she says.

For over two years, the BBC spoke to more than 25 former disciples – from the UK, Nigeria, the US, South Africa, Ghana, Namibia, and Germany – who gave powerful corroborating testimonies of experiencing or witnessing sexual abuse.

The preacher, whose endearing charm and appeal hypnotized millions, did not stop at just sexually abusing his devotees – he started physically abusing them, even asking the so-called ‘disciples’ to beat each other up.

At his command, Ajoke would be beaten up black and blue by her fellow disciples, all for various reasons – insubordination, wetting the bed, oversleeping, etc.

According to one disciple, Rae from the UK, one other disciple took Ajoke to the shower and “whipped her with an electrical cord and then turned the hot water on.”

Ajoke says she was dragged out of his office and put in a room away from the rest of the church members, where she lived in social confinement for more than a year.

“I wonder how I lived through those times. I couldn’t even stand up for days after these beatings. I couldn’t even take a shower. He was trying so hard to stop people listening to me,” she said.

Besides the sexual abuse and merciless beatings, TB Joshua is also accused of staging thousands of fake miracles, all of which would be recorded and then shared widely across Africa and Europe in a bid to convert more followers and reinforce his divine calling.

At a time when Africa was getting badly ravaged by HIV/AIDS, TB Joshua pretended to fully cure it – thus converting millions and attracting crowds drawn from every corner of the earth.

His mega church itself is painted as a place of horror and unforgettable nightmares. The BBC spoke to former disciples who painted a picture of sheer wickedness, profound ungodliness, and nefariousness.

Per the BBC, the church still ‘looms like a gothic temple’ over the Ikotun neighborhood in Lagos, Africa’s largest city.

Joshua designed all 12 stories of the compound adjoining it, where he lived alongside many of his followers. He oversaw the construction of the multiple staircases to his bedroom. The three doors to it, in and out. The hidden prayer room is full of tiny mirrors. The “clinic” downstairs.

Now, former insiders estimate Joshua made tens of millions of dollars from pilgrims and other money streams – fundraising, video sales, and stadium appearances abroad.

He rose from poverty to become one of Africa’s richest pastors.

The disciples served Joshua’s every need – they gave him massages, helped him dress, and sprayed perfume when he entered the room. They even placed plastic gloves on his hands so he could eat his food without touching a crumb.

On September 12, 2014, a large building that was used to house Joshua’s devotees collapsed killing at least 116 people. The collapse was said to be one of the worst disasters to ever strike a place of worship in Africa.

Two days after the collapse, TB Joshua publicly said it was linked to an aircraft that flew over the building used to house visiting pilgrims.

But an inquiry by a Lagos coroner agreed with emergency workers that structural failure had caused the guest house to collapse and said it had been built without proper planning permission.

Eyewitnesses told the BBC that TB Joshua had been warned of serious structural problems before the disaster all of which he bullishly ignored.

Multiple witnesses say the visitors were not warned. Instead more than 200 of them were led into the building’s dining room on the ground floor to eat their lunch – where they were seated when all six stories of concrete descended on top of them.

Many were killed instantly, but more than 100 were trapped inside alive.

Instead of organizing emergency help to free the trapped people, church insiders told the BBC that Joshua blocked emergency services from accessing the site for 24 hours, causing even more unnecessary deaths.

At the height of his infamy, Joshua had hosted numerous African leaders, top celebrities, footballers, and ordinary Nigerians, all seeking miracles and prophecies, as he was renowned for his ability to predict the future and ‘cast out demons’ even with a single sentence. 

Nelson Mandela even had his photo framed and placed on his office desk. 

The exposé has shaken Africa – especially on social media – with many people unable to comprehend TB Joshua’s fiendishness. Some people, however, have come to his defense and are now accusing the BBC of a witchhunt and of investigating ‘trivial’ matters instead of investigating African corruption, the British gulag in her African colonies, and such grander crimes.

While utterly disagreeing with the exposé, former Nigerian Minister of Aviation Femi Fani-Kayode, an avid supporter and friend of T.B Joshua, took to his X account to say that no man or institution can destroy Joshua with dirty lies, not even the BBC.

He wrote: “So true! You touched many lives, fought a good fight, stood till the end, and established a significant and enduring legacy!”

“No man or institution can destroy it with dirty lies, not even the BBC! Continue to rest in peace, brother, and thanks for blessing the Church, the Christian faith, humanity, and our beloved nation, Nigeria. We are and shall always be very proud of you.”

The BBC contacted Joshua’s church for a response, to which Scoan stated that the “unfounded allegations” were not a new occurrence and were unsubstantiated.

TB Joshua: 20 Years Of Scandals, Fake Miracles, Sexual Abuse And Torture Revealed In BBC Documentary