A popular Sierra Leone-based Nigerian pastor, Victor Ajisafe has been arrested by the government after he was found to have made certain outrageous comments about Islamic religion during his Sunday sermon.
Ajisafe, was arrested in Sierra Leone after recordings of a sermon targeting Muslims went viral on social media.
The Guardian UK reports that Ajisafe, who is the founder and leader of one of the country’s largest churches, The Sanctuary Praise Church, while speaking to his congregants called Islam a “violent religion of lies and deceit,” adding that Muslims have been responsible for “every terrorist act in the history of the world.”
Sierra Leone’s population is roughly 78% Muslim, according to a 2015 Pew Research Center estimate.
Audio and video recordings of the sermon appeared online within three days, and were met with immediate and near-universal condemnation by both Muslims and Christians in the country.
The pastor was arrested on Tuesday, but has not yet been charged.
Head of Sierra Leone’s Criminal Investigations Department, MB Kamara, said, “Everyone is very upset by his message.
“We are a very religiously tolerant country and no one ever worries whether someone is Muslim or Christian. We all have lived peacefully for generations, and no one wants that disrupted.”
An initial press release from the social welfare ministry said Ajisafe was being held for his own protection.
And Kamara added that Ajisafe would be held until a charge against him could be determined.