IF WITCHES WERE HORSES … Episode 31&32 – Kolade Segun Okeowo


Other women gathered in groups within the market, discussing the incident that the whole of Onigba-Iwofa was experiencing for the first time in history; a house wife disappears suddenly without traces. To make the matters worse, she is the wife of a pastor!!!

The journey to Onigba-Iwofa was faster than expected. The Church bus that took Pastor Kalejaye, his wife, the Evangelism Director and two other members of the team on the journey was still in very good shape. It was bought only two years ago and reserved for the exclusive use of the Senior Pastor and the Evangelism Team. The same vehicle was used to convey Morakinyo’s belongings when he moved finally to Onigba-Iwofa.

The driver, Brother Dasofunjo knew the road to Shaki and Onigba-Iwofa. Although, he had visited Onigba-Iwofa only once, he had a rare gift of knowing routes well enough. The Senior Pastor once dubbed him “Road Map”

The Hospital Visitation Team of Glory Tabernacle visits the University College Hospital every Saturday afternoon to pray with inmates and offer various material gifts of food items clothes and cash to the sick. The consistency of the group had endeared them to the doctors, nurses and the Para-medics in the hospital. On several occasions, they have prayed for some patients whom the doctors have written off, leading to astounding testimonies of healing and miraculous recoveries.

There was the case of a patient who was diagnosed with a rare case of cancer of the breast. The team took it upon themselves to fast and pray for the patient, beside the regular visitation during the weekends and some week days. After about three weeks of consistent prayers and follow up work, the woman was discharged after doctors confirmed an amazing and miraculous disappearance of the cancerous cells.

Mrs. Aarinola Paseda, has led the team for five years. Despite her job at the University of Ibadan as The Secretary to The Head of The Department of Engineering Physics, she has faithfully and consistently supervised all the activities of the group. She made the vow to dedicate her whole life to the Hospital Visitation Ministry ever since her husband died eight years ago following a ghastly motor accident on the way to Lagos for an official assignment. The incident left her devastated but strengthened spiritually.

Despite her widowhood status, Mrs. Paseda did not allow the bitterness of her husband’s death to weigh her down. Brethren who visited her after the death of her husband reported that she was the one encouraging them. Her kind of faith was rare. Within three years of joining the group, she rose to become the head of the over 25-man team.

The visit to the hospital that day was not only fruitful but rewarding. The time was almost rounding up when a nurse from the Accident and Emergency unit came to invite them. A female patient as brought in over the night as she was involved in a fatal accident. According to those who brought her, she was the least injured in the accident, yet she had completely lost consciousness and was actually brought in dead.

“The nurses on duty were already preparing her for the mortuary when she suddenly jerked up from her unconscious state and started speaking some gibberish. She continued the gibberish until the early hours of the morning when she passed out again” The matron on duty explained to Mrs. Aarinola Paseda and her team.

“We waited to see what will happen before packing her for the mortuary, just in case. All the vital signs proved she was dead, but something kept us convinced that we should wait. Just a few minutes ago, she jerked to life again and began the gibberish talks again”

“Thank you Jesus” said Mrs. Paseda as she moved close to the stretcher where the woman laid. Truly, the woman was saying much gibberish. At first she spoke in French, and then she switched to Igbo, Itsekiri and finally English with a deep guttural voice.

“This is the end of the battle…I cannot continue…I said I don’t have the strength to continue…Can’t you see…If you think you are brave, come and rescue me…You withdrew all my body guards and allowed the accident to happen, so I could die…So you wanted me dead !!!! Ah…That’s good…After all my years of service to your Kingdom. I am ready to die…and go to hellfire!!! No problem…I am ready to die!!! Death is not a big deal!!!” The accident patient continued the gibberish.

Annoyed in the spirit, Mrs. Paseda moved close to the patient, laid hands on her head and spoke. “You shall not die but live in Jesus name. Receive His peace in The Mighty Name of Jeesus!!!”

The woman became silently and slumped into a deep sleep.

“Brethren, lets join hands and pray for her” The team joined hands and began to pray in low tones.

The praises and prayers at the parsonage continued. Akinlolu had also joined his brother and uncle. They sang all manners of praises. Some people who passed by the house and heard the songs concluded the news about the missing woman was not true.

A woman ran to the market and announced publicly. “They have found the pastors wife ooooo”

Within seconds, a crowd had gathered around her to know the source of her information.

“How did you know?” Ilelomia who had just rushed in with Moriyeba her friend asked from the woman.

“Thank you” The woman started her narration “I was a bit delayed on my way to the market today…My little child, was having fever as a result of the new teeth he is developing…At first I thought it was worms, going by the way he was turning his stomach like this and like this” The woman said, demonstrating the stomach pains.

“Heeeh. Woman, speak if you must or keep your information to yourself if you must…Ah, must you say all these. Spare us the details and go straight to the point” Ilelomia shouted, apparently pissed off by the unnecessary details of the woman.

Annoyed, the woman adjusted the baby on her back, tied her wrapper very well and picked her basket.

“Habaa!!! Just because of what she said…Don’t mind my friend. Ilelomia, be patient, lets listen to her” Moriyeba intervened to appease the woman. What she brought is good news. Abi…! Who doesn’t want the pastor’s wife to be found?”

“No-ooo—bo—oooddy !!!” The crowd echoed.

“Please continue woman” Moriyeba concluded.

“So, I went to the chemist shop to buy drugs for my baby…On my way coming back. I decided to pass the route of the palace via the Pastor’s house. You know the Pastor’s house is behind the palace on the junction where three paths meet…One going to the market, the other going to the palace and the…..

“The last one faces the Pastor’s house!!!” Ilelomia impatiently helped the woman to complete the words!!!

The woman eyed Ilelomia wickedly and continued her speech. She was becoming a hero of some sort as everyone strained ears to listen to her. She was not going to allow Ilelomia to spoil her fun!

“Then I began to hear songs from the Pastor and some people in the house. They were thanking God that they have seen the woman”

Some people in the crowd burst into ecstatic shouts; rejoicing that the Pastor’s wife has been found. Moriyeba pulled the woman aside. Ilelomia followed the duo.

“Woman, did you see the Pastor’s wife with your two eyes?” Moriyeba asked investigatively.

“Nooo. I did not enter the house. But will they be singing and dancing like that if they have not found the woman?” The woman said smiling sheepishly.

Moriyeba and Ilelomia exchanged glances and hissed loudly at the same time. They stared at the woman with hatred and walked away from her. Others too walked away from the woman who had suddenly become like a villain.

Heavy knocks at the door of the parsonage forced the praise and worship session to a pause. They had been engrossed in the singing that they did not hear the gentle knocks at first. The increase in the knocks brought the presence of the guests to their awareness. Morakinyo quickly dashed to the door to open it. The police men and Dendoga, the head of the local hunters were standing at the door.

“Congratulations Pastor…We have heard the news. We thank your God” Dendoga was first to speak, smiling broadly.

“But Pastor, you should have informed us first. You know, we all went out yesterday night looking for her. Now that she has been found, we owe everyone who has heard, the duty of telling them that she has been found” The Police Sergeant explained.

Morakinyo smiled and explained “I thank you very much Sirs for your concern and cooperation. Although, we are yet to find her…” Shock and disappointment was clearly written on the faces of the men.

“However, we have contacted relevant authorities and they have given us assurances that all will be well. That is why we are rejoicing…”

The men smiled. “So you have spoken to her people?” The Police constable asked.

Morakinyo sighed, thinking of what to say. He knew he must not tell a lie. Just then the Police Sergeant bailed him out.

“Constable Beyioku, what else do you want to hear? Pastor said he has spoken to relevant authorities. That solves the problem. Thank you Pastor. God bless you”

“I appreciate you officers…Baba Dendoga, thank you very much”

He escorted the men a little. Just a few meters from the house, the church bus drove to the front of the parsonage. Morakinyo sighted the bus from afar. He could identify it because the name of the Church was boldly written on it; besides Adasofunjo drove.

“Ah Pastor, that must be your people!” The Police Sergeant said.

“Yes Officer, those are our people…” Morakinyo said struggling to hide his shock. He was not expecting anyone from the Church let alone the Senior Pastor and his wife. The shock was a mixture of joy and fear. Joy that at last, the Senior Pastor had come to visit him. The fear was the product of his mis-action and error of the marriage to the unknown woman. The sense of shame and guilt was causing a major rumbling in his heart. Tears had swelled in his eyes as he awaited the entourage to finish prayers and step down from the vehicle.

The Police officers and Dendoga waited as the brethren prayed, thanking God for journey mercies. Soon the door opened as Morakinyo ran into the warm embrace of Pastor Kalejaye. The tears flowed freely as he locked himself in a warm embrace with his Senior Pastor. Pastor Kalejaye too shed some tears, while his wife cleared her eyes with her handkerchief frequently. The others watched with emotions as father and son seemed to be locked endlessly in that warm embrace. As far as the policemen and Dendoga were concerned, he was weeping for his missing wife. Unknown to them, the issues were deeper than they could ever imagine.

Morakinyo introduced the men, who greeted Pastor and his entourage warmly before they left. Morakinyo could not relate their efforts about his missing wife to the Senior Pastor.

He simply said “These are the people who have been taking care of us since the whole issue started”

To the Senior Pastor and his entourage, Morakinyo was referring to the mission at Onigba-Iwofa. To the Police Officers and Dendoga, he was talking about their efforts since the wife was declared missing. Only Morakinyo understood what each team have no knowledge of.

“Ah, thank you very much brothers. God will keep your families and take good care of you too” Pastor Kalejaye blessed them further and they departed after Mrs. Kalejaye had given them a big loaf of bread each from the vehicle.

Mrs. Aarinola Paseda sat with the woman in one of the side rooms of the Accident and Emergency Unit. Following the prayers of the Hospital and Visitation Team, she had become stable and quiet. She requested for food and had finished a small loaf of bread, bean cakes and a bottle of soft drink. Mrs. Paseda had released some members of the team to leave but requested her assistant and two other members to stay behind with her so as to attend to the case of this special woman.

“Are you okay now?” Mrs. Paseda asked the woman after she had finished her meal.

She nodded in response and continued to look askance. She seemed to be emotionally disturbed.

“Do you want us to come back and discuss with later, so you can take some rest” Mrs. Paseda asked the woman.

She stared straight at Mrs. Paseda. Tears had formed rings round her eyes. “You’re a Christian?” She asked, her voice trembling.

“Yes I am” Mrs. Paseda responded. “I am a born again Christian, washed by the blood of The Lamb and saved by His Grace. Same with all these brethren, they are also Christians”

She sighed deeply and said “Please don’t go…I need to talk to you”

“Okay…We are all ears, you can confide in us” Mrs. Paseda said reassuredly.

The woman stared at each member of the Team as if to confirm what the leaders said from their eyes. As she opened her mouth to speak, she burst into tears instead.

Morakinyo bowed in the living room. Akinlolu had told everyone, everything about the Pastor’s wife. Then, Lanre explained all about Betty Campbell on the campus. His testimony left everyone mouth agape. Pastor Kalejaye requested Lanre and Akinlolu to excuse themselves from the meeting. He also excused the two other members of the Evangelism Team who came with them. He was was left alone with his wife, Morakinyo, and the Evangelism Team Leader.

“Brother Morakinyo, please tell us all these are not true. Tell us we are dreaming!” Pastor Mrs. Kalejaye was the first to set the ball rolling as soon as they left. Morakinyo went on his knees. The tears started flowing freely now.

“Mummy, sincerely, I can’t explain what went wrong…I am still yet to come to terms with the whole incident” Morakinyo said amidst sobs.

Pastor Kalejaye shifted his body from the reclining position on the sofa and moved closer to Morakinyo. “So, you have been married to a woman you don’t know for a whole month” He paused and shook his head. “Brother Morakinyo? By now she could be carrying your baby?”

Morakinyo sighed deeply. He had expected that question.

“Sir, that is another mystery too difficult for me to explain…Since we got married, I have not been able to make love to her. We tried severally but it did just work”

“Brother Morakinyo, you want us to believe that. Three months!!!” Mrs. Kalejaye almost exclaimed.

“Mummy it’s hard to believe, but that is the truth. I am completely impotent now”


Morakinyo sighed deeply. He had expected that question.

“Sir, that is another mystery too difficult for me to explain…Since we got married, I have not been able to make love to her. We tried severally but it did just work”

“Brother Morakinyo, you want us to believe that. Three months!!!” Morakinyo said, sobbing the more.

“Mummy it’s hard to believe, but that is the truth. I am completely impotent now”

“Praise God” Pastor Kalejaye did not know when the words escaped. He had been ruminating on the many implications of the soul attachment and blood covenant that must have resulted from the sexual union between Morakinyo and this now-confirmed-agent of darkness who is now at large.

Pastor Kalejaye reclined on the sofa again for a few minutes. There was a pin drop silence. The few minutes appeared like years to Morakinyo. He was ready to hear and obey whatever instruction would come from his father in the Lord whom he had inexplicably avoided in the last few months. He was like a fish thrown out of the river!

Pastor Kalejaye rose from his reclining position again and spoke.

“Brother Morakinyo, you shall leave with us to Ibadan at once”

“Yes Sir”

“You are a wounded Soldier…You must be treated as such and be taken proper care of”

“Yes Daddy!”

“But Daddy, what about the congregation” Pastor Mrs. asked with concern.

“Yes, we must consider that, but the wounded Soldier must first be evacuated from the battle front” Pastor Kalejaye explained. “Brother Morakinyo, have you raised any disciple during your stay here, who can stand in for two to three weeks on your behalf?”

Morakinyo bowed his head ashamedly and said “No Sir”

“That is what you should have done first. Raising disciples comes immediately after the reaping of converts…No problem, as a matter of urgency; the Evangelism Team will take over this field for the next two months. Thank God, it’s holiday period, most of the members who are teachers will have the opportunity to come over and assist here”

“Yes Daddy” Morakinyo said amidst the sobs.

“But we shall not leave today. We shall all stay here with you today and leave first thing tomorrow morning. We shall spend the rest of today visiting members of the church in their homes and assure them that all is well…” Pastor said with serious concern.

“That’s ok Daddy. Thank you Sir” Morakinyo said. The sobs have reduced now.

“You mentioned the good roles Kabiyesi has been playing in the mission here” Pastor Kalejaye asked. Morakinyo nodded. “Good. We need to pay a courtesy visit to him first…He is around?” Pastor asked.

“Yes Daddy. Kabiyesi hardly travels. He is a retired Civil Servant”

Mrs. Paseda and her team waited for the woman to finish her sobs before offering to placate her. The few lessons of Psychology that Mrs. Paseda had taken in the course of her hospital visitation ministry has taught her to allow counselees some little time to be relieved of tension and bottled-up emotions by shedding some tears. She offered the woman an handkerchief with which she wiped her eyes and began to speak.

“My name is Oyinkansola…Oyinkansola Oyero…I was involved in an accident that I later learnt claimed the lives of all the passengers except mine. How I managed to escape; I still don’t understand” The woman started with trembling voice.

“Praise the Lord’ Mrs. Paseda said. The other members of her team chorused “Hallelujah”

The confusion that engulfed the palace of the Queen of the Coast was unprecedented. The ground in the place right under the Atlantic Ocean shook heavily like an earthquake. The Queen was not only vexed but equally troubled and pissed off. The demons sent on assignment to bring an end to the life of Princess Hagatha on her way from Onigba-Iwofa had failed woefully. They had returned to announce a successfully carried out assignment on the Station Wagon car that conveyed Hagatha from Shaki to Lagos.

The Queen of The Coast had stripped Hagatha of all her powers just before leaving Onigba-Iwofa. Unknown to Oyinkan, even the very thoughts of her mind were monitored by the Queen. The moment she started the rebellious thoughts against The Queen, relevant telescopic powers installed on the Queen herself had given the expected signals. The Queen is alerted in such manner, the moment any of her agents begins to nurse rebellious thoughts towards her.

The initial plan was to kill her in Onigba-Iwofa right in the parsonage but the presence of Greatone made it impossible to penetrate the parsonage and attack anyone including Oyinkan. Out of frustration, The Queen had ordered Hagatha to immediately abandon the Onigba-Iwofa mission and return to Lagos. The plan was to kill her immediately she leaves the precinct of Onigba-Iwofa.

The wagon she boarded from Onigba-Iwofa could not be used to kill Oyinkan. Every attempt made by the assigned demons to cause any accident failed because of the presence of a child of God who came from Shaki to visit his parents. He preached from Onigba-Iwofa till the vehicle stopped at Shaki. His presence and sermon disturbed and halted the operations of the demons until they reached Shaki.

The vehicle from Shaki to Ibadan was a better option. The demons had sized up and got relevant information about all the passengers in the vehicle. None of them had the mark of the blood. Satisfied that all was set for operations, the demons induced the driver to sleep off on the steering around Akinmorin; a few kilometers after Oyo town; en route Ibadan.

The driver was woken by the screams of the passengers who saw he was heading directly towards an oncoming trailer. He woke just a few seconds before driving directly under the trailer. To save the accident, he swerved the steering suddenly but it was too late. The front bumper of the trailer caught the fender of the Station Wagon and threw it with great force causing the wagon to summersault seven times from the laterite road into the nearby open grassland. As it somersaulted, passengers were thrown out of the windows causing varying degrees of injuries. By the time sympathizers and policemen arrived the scene of the accident; all the passengers, except Oyinkan had died!

The demons who supervised the operations had gleefully returned to the palace to give report that the deed had been done. Therefore, it brought a great shock to the Queen when telescopic monitors in her palace showed Oyinkan speaking with Mrs. Paseda and her team.

“That woman and her team must be stopped at once” The Queen roared in anger! “I know her. She and her team have caused great havoc in that hospital in the last five years…I know what she is going to do…She is going to hand over Princess Hagatha to the Son of The Owner…I can’t stand that….The Lord Lucifer will question me. Hagatha is a priced warrior of this Kingdom. If we can’t have her…The Son of the Owner will not have her! Go and stop them…and kill her!”

As she gave the command, seven powerful demons left the palace immediately.

Dr. Gilbert Goriola walked into the ward and saw the visitation team speaking with a patient. His expression showed he hated the presence of the brethren around the patient.

“Hello ladies and gentlemen…What the hell is going on here” He almost shouted at the brethren, his eyes bulging with extreme hatred. “Who gave you the permission to do this?”

“We have the necessary papers approving our weekly visitations to fraternize with patients and pray with them. We are from The Glory Tabernacle Church here in Ibadan” Mrs. Paseda stood from the chair near Oyinkan to meet Dr. Goriola. She was already getting angry, but she knew that has to be kept or else, the monster looking Senior Doctor could mess up the whole day for the team.

“We have been doing this for several years working in cooperation with the hospital” Mrs. Paseda explained.

Two members of the team stepped out of the room and moved to a quiet corridor of the ward. They joined hands and began to pray.

“I see, am not aware of that. Can I see the relevant papers that so authorizes you to do this?” Goriola asked. He moved to the patient on the bed. ”Are these your relations?” He touched the wearied looking Oyinkan.

“They are my church people” Oyinkan lied. She needed the attention of the Paseda-led team badly. She knew she had to desperately cling to any line of help at such a time as this. She knew what was probably cooking for her from the palace of the Queen of the Coast. She stared angrily at the Senior Doctor and wished she still had her powers like before. A mere stare at him for two minutes, non-stop was enough to destabilize him, blur his view or cause his speech to become slurred. She regretted her inability to deal with the intruding doctor.

“Well, if they are not your relations, they are not permitted here at this hour. So, they may as well take their leave at once” Goriola said with finality.

“Sir, the letter you asked for is available but definitely not here. We might need to return to the church before we can lay our hands on the letter. By then, the day would have been over” Mrs. Paseda tried to convince Dr. Goriola again. She was speaking in tongues under her breathe, binding every force that have chosen to use the Senior Medical Officer as an hindrance.

The seven demons sent from the Palace of the Queen of the coast wobbled around the hospital. They could not come close within 100 meters radius of the ward. A wall of fire surrounded the ward causing the temperature to rise to over 1000 degree Celsius. They walked lazily around the hospital looking askance and unsure of what to do. They dare not return to the palace with negative news!

Soon the brethren who went to pray returned with one of The Senior Nurses in the Ward.

“Yes, Nurse Ayelabola, are you aware that any church was given permission to speak to patients in this unit on Saturdays”

The Nurse smiled and said “Sir, they been doing this for years. When I was transferred to this unit, I met them operating here. That was about three years ago Sir. Even the CMD is aware Sir”

“Arrant nonsense! I am not aware! Oh, so, the CMD is the Lord of The Manor here? If I am not aware…they can’t do such things in my unit. Madam, please get your things and move out. Until I see the paper authorizing you, you have no business returning here” Goriola was raising his voice now.

Just then, an entourage of the Chief Medical Director walked into the ward. The CMD, a very jovial and amiable personality was on an unscheduled ward round and decided to check first at the accident and emergency unit. As he moved into the ward, one of the nurses rushed to the room to meet Dr. Goriola.

“Sir, the CMD is here on ward round” The Nurse said and walked away.

Goriola sighed heavily. Cold shivers ran down his spine. He blinked his eyelids, clenched his fists and let out a puff of air from his mouth. He was not going to do anything that will offend the CMD. His mind quickly remembered two years ago when the CMD saved his neck from a fatal case of negligence.

He had mistakenly prescribed a drug meant for high blood pressure patients to a fairly old man who had a case of low blood pressure. The old man died under one hour. Preliminary investigations had pointed accusing fingers at Goriola. However, before the case became a public embarrassment, the CMD, Professor Ropo Olowu had swept it under the carpet and moved him to the Accident and Emergency Unit. Fortunately, the victim was fairly old so it was easy for The CMD to pacify his family with “The Lord giveth, The Lord taketh” philosophy.

Since then, Goriola had remained eternally grateful to the CMD. He quickly remembered the Nurse standing with him saying “Even the CMD is aware Sir” What if she goes to report his outburst about the CMD? Dr. Goriola looked at Mrs. Paseda and sighed again.

“Madam, if you are coming next week, please bring the relevant letter. I must see it before I can allow you continue…Go on for today” He said and moved immediately.

Mrs. Paseda went on her knees and thanked Dr. Goriola. Deep within her, she wished she could walk after him to the CMD and tell the man what Goriola has just said about him. As soon as Goriola stepped out with the nurse, the brethren smiled and quickly returned to Oyinkan who continued her story.

Oyinkan told Mrs. Paseda and her team everything! She hid nothing from them.

“I grew up with my parents in village called Ayenuro near Lokoja in Kwara State. When I was twelve years old, one of my uncles came from Lagos and took me along with him to Lagos. His wife had no child at the time I moved in to live with them”

Oyinkan paused a bit and looked at Mrs. Paseda with a begging look as if to say ‘Are you sure I am safe’

Mrs. Paseda smiled reassuringly and gave her signal to continue.

“Unknown to him, his wife belonged to a marine kingdom. She was the one who introduced me to the marine world at that tender age in exchange for her conception. I was a price paid for her ability to conceive because she had four children in quick succession”

She paused again and sought Paseda’s approval to continue. Mrs Paseda nodded to assure her that all is well.

She continued “I grew rapidly in the marine Kingdom because of my intelligence and sharp mind. By the time I was fifteen, the Queen had set me apart for special assignments…My last operation was in town near Shaki called Onigba-Iwofa where I lured a Pastor to marry me”

Mrs. Paseda adjusted her seat. Onigba-Iwofa? Her home town? A Pastor? ‘These are too connected to be a coincidence’ Mrs. Paseda thought.

“Do you still remember the name of the Pastor” Mrs. Paseda asked eagerly. She was already putting some pieces together!

“The name of the Pastor?” asked Oyinkan looking askance. She seemed not to remember anything again at that moment. Her mind went blank as she struggled to recollect the name of her Pastor-husband in Onigba-Iwofa.

“His name?” She repeated again, staring sheepishly at the brethren.

“Yes, his name” Mrs. Paseda said almost impatiently.

“His name is…em…oh no!…His name is Pastor… I can’t remember his name again”

“No problem…Do you remember anything about him? Anything at all” Mrs. Paseda said investigatively.

The mention of Onigba-Iwofa, her hometown had suddenly sparked a personal interest in her. She also remembered that a Senior Lecturer in her place of work at the University; Dr. Morakinyo Olagunsoye had gone on mission field at Onigba-Iwofa.

“I am sorry, I can’t remember anything again” Oyinkan said almost sobbing.

Truly, her mind had gone completely blank. She remembered nothing about Morakinyo again!