UK civil rights organisation, OpenDemocracy, masterminded the blocking of Emmanuel TV channel on YouTube, reports have shown.
And Pastor T.B. Joshua’s claim that he could cure gays and lesbians of their s.e.xual orientation was what provoked the group to file a complaint to YouTube, accusing him of propagating hatred.
UK-based openDemocracy filed a complaint after reviewing seven videos posted on TB Joshua Ministries’ YouTube channel between 2016 and 2020, which show the preacher conducting prayers to “cure” gay people.
One of the videos is an update of a prayer session of a woman called Okoye, first broadcast in 2018.
In it TB Joshua slaps and pushes Okoye and an unnamed woman at least 16 times and tells Okoye: “There is a spirit disturbing you. She has transplanted herself into you. It is the spirit of woman,” openDemocracy reports.
The video which was viewed more than 1.5 million before the YouTube channel was taken down, later shows her testifying before the congregation that “the spirit of woman” had been destroying her life but she had been healed after the preacher’s prayers.
She declares that she had stopped having “affection” to women and “now I have affections for men”.
A YouTube spokesperson told openDemocracy that the channel had been closed because its policy “prohibits content which alleges that someone is mentally ill, diseased, or inferior because of their membership in a protected group including s.e.xual orientation”.
The preacher said he was appealing against YouTube’s decision.
A post on TB Joshua Ministries Facebook account said: “We have had a long and fruitful relationship with YouTube and believe this decision was made in haste.”
According to BBC, Facebook has also removed at least one of the offending posts showing a woman being slapped while TB Joshua says he is casting out a “demonic spirit”.
His YouTube account had 1.8 million subscribers.