The RT. Rev. Jonathan Arhavwarien is the Bishop of St. Lazarus Church. He is the Director of Research, Planning and Strategy, CAN, Delta State. He is also a prophet and has to his credit many prophecies come true. In this interview with Jon Egie, he speaks on political issues relating to the just concluded general elections and declares that the outcome of the election was an act of God.






Rt Rev Dr Jonathan Arhavwarien

Rt Rev Dr Jonathan Arhavwarien

My Lord Bishop, sometime before the general election you predicted that contrary to popular forecast and intelligence calculations, Nigeria will not break. You also assured that President Jonathan will win and do a second term but he failed, what went wrong?


For the first time we prayed.


Prophesy is a word from God and anything that can change prophesy is prayer. We prayed for the unity of Nigeria and if God knows that if Jonathan wins there will be no peace in this country he will not allow Him to win. So, we were praying for him to win but God has the power to answer. We asked for three things, we prayed for the unity of the nation for Nigeria not to break, we prayed for peace and we prayed for Jonathan to win the election. These are the three prayers we made and if God knows that if Jonathan wins it will truncate these two requests so he gave two to us out of the three, He answered two and did not answer one, then we cannot query Him. We only have to thank Him. We prayed for unity of the country, prayed for peace and we prayed for Jonathan to win the election but if God knows that if he won the election the country will break, there will be no peace and there will be shedding of blood, the Lord will prefer that peace reigns in the country. We all know what happened during the election, if not prayer we know that there was rigging in the up North like some other people say it happened in the South – South. So if not for prayer assuming that this election was cancelled like what happened in 1991, you know there would have been more bloodshed in the country. So, do not see Jonathan losing the election, Jonathan scarified his position for the peace and unity of Nigeria otherwise he did not lose the election. For example, a sitting President could not be accredited by the card reader and he has to vote with incidental form it cannot happen anywhere in the world. But he decided for peace to reign and I could see that it was the word of God touching his heart to accept even when they have not finished collating the results he accepted defeat, we have never seen it. It was an act of God to bring peace to the country.


Does that in anyway falsify your prophecy that Jonathan will win the election and render your properly as useless and baseless?

No! No!! No!!!  we prophesy and we pray to God it is God that answers. If you requested three things from God and God gave you two you have scored a high mark so the prophesy still stands. The man only scarified his position on the altar of unity and peace. We prayed for him to win, we prayed for peace and unity. These three things we asked from the Lord and the Lord knows that if he won there would be problem He has to do His will. We are not God to say this is what must be done. Isaiah told Hezekiah in the bible you will die, put your house together thus says the Lord: and the same Hezekiah went to God in prayer and said, remember, and the same God told Isaiah again go and tell him you will not die. You know we predicted earlier but before the election we started getting messages from God that if we get what we want this will be the outcome. So the peace and unity of Nigeria is more than the seat of the President and so we resigned to say Lord let your will be done. So if we decided that Lord we do not care if the country breaks and there is no peace so far give us the President then we are not good leaders. Whosoever comes on board it is four years and maximum of eight years. Many Nigeria will live more than eight years and yet the peace we want is more than eight years people prophesied he will win but before the election God started telling us, choose the unity of the nation, the peace of the nation and Jonathan winning the election and you face trouble, war and breakage of the country. Every leader will go for the best.




Bishop Arhavwarien

Bishop Arhavwarien

For the sake of our reading public can you draw a line between prayer and prophesy?

Yes. There is difference between prayer and prophesy, prophesy tells you what is coming but prayer has power to change prophecy. I told you the example in the bible, Hezekiah, Isaiah prophesied he will die, the man prayed and God changed His mind. The only thing that changes God’s mind is prayer. So, prophecy is what God tells you that will happen – this person is going to die or he is going to win and then if the person does not desire that prophecy and he prays to God and says Lord instead of this thing let it be like this God can change his  mind. He did it in the times of Hezekiah. If we said Jonathan must win and Jonathan is praying say Lord I do not want war in my country, if it is my position that will cause war and make this country to break Lord take this position and let there be peace and unity, if he prayed that prayer then that prayer has power to change any prophecy. So those people who are accusing men of God that they prophesied that Jonathan will win and he did not win, no! it is our prayer, the prayer can change prophecy.




How does CAN feel today that the will of God is done in Nigeria?

First thing is we gave thanks to God  after the election because our paramount duty is to ensure peace. Jonathan is an individual and whosoever becomes the President of Nigeria, Nigeria still remains Nigeria and the person will stay and go. We, CAN, the  body of Christians are happy that there is peace, there is unity and the nation did not break. Jonathan did not die on seat, if peradventure he won the election and was assassinated the next day, what happens, what do you do? There will be crisis. But today God has been faithful to him, he has been in power for 16years as a deputy governor to a President for 16years without break. So if God decides that he should go on break now that is not enough for us to accuse God say why did He do it? It is the same God who helped him from classroom teacher to deputy governor, to acting governor, to governor, to vice president, to acting president and to president. God has been faithful to him and all this time we have been praying for him and God has been answering our prayers. So, if he decided to sacrifice the position in the altar of peace and God sees that will be better for Nigeria, than what has happened is the best for this nation.




Muhammadu Buhari

Muhammadu Buhari

Do you think the APC and Buhari, the President – elect see the hand of God in this election?

Of a truth everybody has his own reasoning where we have the hand of God in this election is for the sitting President conceding defeat to an opponent. This is an act of God. The man can stay and can decide to cause trouble like what Gbabo did but it is only the Holy Spirit that spoke to Jonathan to allow peace to reign. You know the man said that his own ambition is not worth the blood of any Nigeria, so he did not want people to die. So the APC should know that Jonathan conceding to them is an act of God, an act of grace for peace to reign because actually, if you look very well, the North are yearning that the South has been in power for 16 years because Obasanjo was there eight years from the South and Yar’Adua came he stayed only two years and he died, Jonathan acted for the other two years and then again for another four years which is six, six plus eight that is 14 years; so they take it that it is their turn and God is a God of equity and justice, if the South has had it for 14years there is nothing wrong taking it to the North. So we should not blame God the APC should see it that what has happened is an act of God.



How will you advice the APC in regards to how they carry their victory?

My advice to APC is that they should be comported but I want to thank God for the life of Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, he has not supported the behaviour of some members of the APC after the election rather he has been romancing with Jonathan on the way forward. Jonathan remains the President of Nigeria till May 29 and if he was not a man who has love for the country he could do anything, it is just question of announcement, nothing happens there will be chaos crisis.




President Goodluck Jonathan

President Goodluck Jonathan

The South – South seem not to be very happy with the outcome of the election especially with the performance of the South – West, what do you think will be the consequence of this in future politics of Nigeria?

The truth of the matter is the hand writing is very clear on the wall and as Christians we will always ask for the spirit of forgiveness and for people to forgive because the South-West supported us in 2011 and something must have gone wrong that made them to turn their back on us in 2015. So, it is the duty of the South – South to go back to the drawing board and find out where they got it wrong. We were in a meeting when the men of God in South – West told us that in 2011 they supported Jonathan, Lagos and other western states voted for him but in the process of sharing power nothing was given to the South – west as the President was from the South – South, Minister of finance from the South – South, Minister of Petroleum from South-South, Secretary to the Government of the Federation from the South – East, deputy Speaker of House of Reps from South – East, the Vice President from the North, Senate President from the North, Speaker House of Reps from the North; and then the West have nothing. So what they did now I can call it retaliation but I want to advise our South – South politicians to go back to the drawing board and see where we got it wrong so that we can flow together as only one geopolitical zone cannot make a President. If the Yorubas want to be President tomorrow they will still need the South – South. The North will not be there forever, after eight years of the North it will definitely come to the South and if a Yoruba man is vying for the President he will need the vote of the South – South. So that is why they need us as we need them but for this election people of the South – South are not happy because the South – West worked against the interest of the South but they have their own reason.



Are Nigeria Christians politically focused?


Sen Dr Ifeanyi Okowa

Sen Dr Ifeanyi Okowa

The Nigeria Christians will learn their lesson in this election for example, I am the Director for Research, Planning and Strategy of CAN in Delta State, I discovered that in Nigeria we have more Christians than Muslims but in terms of registration Muslims are more than the Christians. There are many Christians who do not participate in election, they do not register, they do not vote. During the election all the Hausa/Fulani who are here, shoemakers, suya sellers they all went home to vote because they registered. But there are many of our Ibo brothers who registered in the North who did not come home and so during the election they could not come out because you cannot live in the far North and say you are going to vote against Buhari. It is just like somebody living in Delta and say you want to vote against Jonathan. So that really worked against the South – East and South – South. It brought many of our votes down. So I want to advice the Christians because we are many in number but in registration, for example, the 7th Day Adventist with over 20 million membership in this country do not vote because election is on Saturday, they did not go for voting; the Jehovah witness are over 10milliom in this country who are also Christians they do not vote. So we Christians are more but in terms of registration and participation in the electoral process the Muslims are more than the Christians because they do not register. This is where we get it wrong. Many people make noise in the church go and vote but if you did not register and you do not have permanent voter’s card can you vote? Now that they have brought PVS voting I want to advise Christians to register so that we can put Christians in power, only prayer cannot put a man in a position. After you prayed you back up your prayer with your PVC.



Now let us come home to Delta State, you correctly predicted that Okowa will win the election and Okowa has won but his major contender Great Ogboru lost the election, what do you think is responsible for Ogboru’s serial failure?


You know I predicted that Okowa will win the election and he won and I want to assure that it is prayer also and  after we prayed we backed him up with over PVC. The real cause of Ogboru failure in this election is the disunity in Urhobo. I am an elderly man as far as the ministry work is concerned, I have put in about 35 years in the ministry. The bible says any house that is divided against itself cannot stand. In this past election in Delta North there are nine local government areas and no other governorship candidate came out to contest with Okowa in that area. In Delta South there are eight local government areas and in the whole of the South because they have Otuaro as a deputy governor coming, no other person from the South in any other political party contested the governor or deputy governor. So the South and the North have an accord. It was two against one in a friendship of three persons. The Urhobo was divided, the APC candidate was from Urhobo, the Labour candidate was from Urhobo. Now Urhobo has eight LGAs, the North is nine and the South is eight that make up the 25; the two other groups had only one candidate that is 17 LGAs had one candidate while 8 LGAs had two candidates, how do you think they can win? So that was the problem. The Urhobo were the architect of their own failure because the Urhobo Progress Union could not reconcile Emerhor and Ogboru to make one step down for the other. If Ogboru had stepped down for Emerhor and worked with Emerhor, Emerhor would have won and if Emerhor stepped down for and worked with Ogboru, Ogboru would have won. So by the next election if Urhobo want to win there must be unity. Look at UPU, we have the Onoge faction supporting Emerhor, we have Omene faction supporting Ogboru. We the Urhobo council of ministers international we held a meeting in Sapele and met UPU that if we go this way we will fail, that they should talk to all the key persons but how can they do that when the President and the Vice President are to logger head.



Considering your prediction that Okowa will win was the finger of God responsible for the confusion in Urhobo?


Chief Great Ogboru

Chief Great Ogboru

No! I cannot say it was the finger of God, Urhobo are confused themselves just like I told you, prayer changes things, even as we prophesied that Okowa will win if Urhobo were united and they prayed in one mind that prophecy can be up turned. But now look at the Urhobo prayer, some were praying for the APC, some were praying for Labour and some were praying for PDP and then the whole of the North and South were praying for PDP, who would win? So Okowa winning is an act of God.


Now Okowa has won, Okowa is going to succeed Uduaghan, Uduaghan succeeded Ibori, people complain that the Ibori political dynasty has not done Delta well, do you see God helping Okowa to perform better than Ibori and Uduaghan?

Well, with God all things are possible and I will also narrow it down to prayer. Prayer is a very strong weapon, the only thing that can change divine instruction is prayer, prayer can change anything. I can say you will die and you say you will not die. So, if we Christians support Okowa in prayer he is going to do better than the previous administrations because there is an adage that says the child should do better than the father. We are hoping that Okowa should do more than his predecessors and he can only succeed by prayer so I enjoin all Deltans to support Okowa in prayer for him to succeed because if he fails it will affect both Christians and non-Christians.



But there are petitions flying to the election tribunal calling for a cancellation of the election, do you see a possible re-run election?    


Ortega Emerhor

Ortega Emerhor

My advice to these petitioners is they should buy the spirit of Jonathan. You know Jonathan could go to court that he was not satisfied with the outcome of the election but he decided to let peace reign. Those people, Emerhor and Ogboru should buy the spirit of Jonathan and allow the sleeping dog lie. If for instance they go to the tribunal today they would be spending their money and Okowa will be spending the State money. The money that is supposed to be used in development will be used for lawyers and the judges, there is no two way about it, nothing is free. So I will advise as a spiritual father in the state that they should buy the spirit of Jonathan by allowing Okowa to rule but the possibility of a rerun is not there and even though any person tells you there is going to rerun, I doubt because the election in some areas it was free and fair and some people say in their area it was not free and fair so I do not know of those areas but in my own LGA we voted, we used card readers and we voted and I am sure that the man is in the heart of the people of the state. He should be given a chance to rule, all I know government is not for one person, it is just eight years and after eight years it will definitely come  to Urhobo turn, like I told you, God is a God of justice and equity, you know since the time of the creation of this state Urhobo has had it, Delta South has had it but Delta North has not had it. So if you are God and you are talking of equity what will you do? You give to the North. As a man I advise them to support the man in the North to finish his turn definitely it will come back to the central and after central do their eight years it will go back to the south and that will maintain our brotherly unity because government is continuous.


Let us jump up to the national again, as a prophet of God what can you see by way of prophecy on Nigeria under Buhari for the next four years?


All is boiling down to prayer. I will also enjoin all Nigerians to support Buhari in prayer for him to succeed. It is God that rules in the affairs of men. In the bible Cyrus was not a Christian but God used him to bless the Christians so Buhari, a Muslim, the same God can still use him to better the life of this nation. So I want to enjoin all Nigerians to support him in prayer because his failure will bring suffering to the teeming populace of Nigeria and not to himself alone, he will never suffer as a President but if he succeeds it will bring success to the teeming populace of Nigeria so we should back him with prayer. I see this government that is coming to be fair to Nigerians, he is going to fight corruption and my advice to him is not to send people to prison, if he finds anybody who stole money he should sell the property of that man to recover the money back to Nigeria coffers to better the life of the poor people. So I see this government to be good. You know I told you that Nigeria will not break that those who died for this nation their blood are still crying for the unity and the peace of this nation. Anybody who does not wish Nigeria well will leave Nigeria and Nigeria will come up again. In this Buhari administration I see good things coming. So many people predicted that after the election there will not be Nigeria again but here we are.


Do you see the US disappointed with their prediction?

It has failed and that is what I am telling you, they predicted but it is God that controls, we prayed, we own Nigeria and those of us who own Nigeria said Nigeria cannot break and God answered our prayer.


CAN enjoyed so much patronage under the presidency of Jonathan and Jonathan is leaving by May 29, what hope do you see for CAN to manage?

I cannot really accept that CAN enjoyed so much in the government of Jonathan although there are media reports that so much money was given to CAN, 7billion, 9billion, 10billion; but all these rumours have no proof. CAN is an institution which is funded by the Christians so any government that  comes on board must look for CAN and not CAN looking for the government because even Buhari needs prayers from the Muslims and Christians to succeed and when you need prayer you must come to CAN. So, CAN in Jonathan’s administration is not different from Yar’Adua’s and Obasanjo’s CAN  remains CAN. Individual and church organisation may have benefited from Jonathan like myself I did not benefit from him, my church did not benefit from him. So I do not see anything threatening CAN because Jonathan did not give us any money as CAN main body, maybe he gave to individual churches, those who called him for conferences but CAN as a body, I am a member of the state body I am a member of the national, I did not see any time Jonathan gave money to CAN so that because he is not there CAN cannot succeed no! CAN is an institution, CAN sustains itself.


Your last piece of advice to Nigerians as we enter the next political regime?

My advice to Nigerians number one we should pray for our leaders, we should leave criticisms, eschew fighting one another, let us prayer for our leaders to succeed. Remember the words of the National anthem that says Oh God of creation direct our noble cause, guide our leaders aright, and this should be the watch word to every Christian and Muslim in Nigeria. Let us pray for our leaders. This is not time to crucify our leaders; leadership is a difficult task so they need prayers. Buhari is not a magician he cannot turn this country over night, he needs our cooperation and prayer for things to work out. Let us pray for our leaders for God to direct and guide them so that they will lead well. I say the same thing to Deltans, let us pray for Okowa, support him with prayers so that he can rule well and there should be no litigation because when there are cases the state money will be used. I thank God for Jonathan that Buhari is not going to face any litigation you know in 2011 Buhari was in court with Jonathan for four years. I advise others states to give peace a chance so that we can have a better Nigeria and God bless Nigeria.


Thank you very much.