Believer Authority Christian Church in Ganta where the crime allegedly occurred Pastors, Imams and leaders of religious bodies are not only to preach to their flocks, but equally under obligation to live exemplary and morally upright. However, when a “man of God” decides to sexually abuse a 12-year-old girl as the Head Pastor of the Believer Authority Christian Church [BACC] in Ganta, Nimba County has been accused; the congregation he leads is left dumbfounded.
Pastor John Bestman, 38, allegedly raped his 12-year-old victim in his office at the church located in the Public Work Yard community in Ganta last Thursday, 24 March, and subsequently arrested the following day by police.
According to police charged sheet, Pastor Bestman has been charged with rape and sent to the Ganta Magisterial Court for trial. His wife, Madam Annie Bestman, who happens to be Mother of the Church, has also been arrested and jailed for allegedly attacking state security officers who had gone to arrest her husband at the Believer Authority Christian Church compound.
Families members told our Nimba County correspondent Pastor Bestman and the victim live in the same yard where he sent her in the church room to wash his drinking glass, and subsequently followed her into the room with 150 Liberian Dollars offer before allegedly committing the ungodly act.
Some residents of the Public Work Yard community told this paper the act is not the first by the “Man of God.” According to them, this is Pastor Bestman’s third time being arrested by God. The Believer Authority Christian Church [BACC] has branches in both Grand Bassa and Nimba Counties.
Several residents of Ganta, who spoke to this paper, noted there were many fake or bogus churches and schools in the city, whose real intent is to get money from parents and Church-goers rather than imparting knowledge and teaching the word of God.
They called on the authorities to bring Pastor John Bestman to justice so that he can bear the full weight of the law. Other aggrieved residents disclosed several so-called pastors in Ganta had been involved in alleged sexual abuses, including rape, but such cases were compromised.
Rape is a felonious crime here punishable by 10 years imprisonment or life sentence, depending on the gravity of the offense.
By Franklin Doloquee, Nimba-Edited by Jonathan Browne