Kenyans online have demanded the arrest of a Meru-based preacher who termed the coronavirus pandemic as a hoax.
Addressing the media on Thursday, Reverend Nathan Kirimi of Jesus Winner Ministry sensationally claimed Jesus told him that there is nothing like coronavirus.
“Jesus Christ our Lord told me to tell the whole world that there is no disease like coronavirus. He told me to tell the world that He Himself was the one who caused this to intended people and let this terror hit the world to see people who truly trusted in him fully with strong faith,” the cleric said.
Kirimi vowed not to shut down his church over the outbreak, saying God instructed him to have it remain open. He added that people reported to have succumbed to Covid-19 died of “natural causes.”
"If indeed there is such a disease, then, I should be taken where I can contract it and if I get it, then, you should know that there is no prophet in Kenya," he said.
“Now concerning the reported cases of death, known to have been caused by the coronavirus, Jesus told me to let the whole world know that it was just natural death and not the Coronavirus as was said,” he added.
Jesus Winner Ministries has since distanced itself from Reverend Kirimi’s claims, saying they are his personal opinions. The head of the ministry Bishop Edward Mwai termed Kirimi’s utterances as unlawful and against the government efforts to combat the virus.
“The management, Board and the Secretary of Jesus Winner Ministry wish to inform Kenyans that the statements made by Rev Nathan Kirimi of Meru are his personal opinions and do not reflect the official position of the church,” a statement from the ministry read.
“Rev Kirimi has no position in the national or regional council of the church. These are personal opinions. This is not a matter to be taken lightly because the disease has killed many and affected the entire world,” Bishop Mwai noted.
The illness has so far spread to 192 countries and territories with the number of infections globally standing at 253,085 and 10,406 deaths. Kenya has recorded seven cases.