A UK based-Nigerian Pastor, Tomi Arayomi and his wife, Tema, have broken their silence, following their arrest in Abuja on Friday, 7th April 2023 by operatives of the Department of State Services and subsequent release.
The pastor, in a statement shared on his Instagram account on Sunday, said his personal assistant, Emmanuel Ezerika, who was arrested with him and his wife, is still in DSS detention.
He wrote, “Prophetess Tahmar and I would like to express our gratitude for all your prayers and international support during Friday’s ordeal with the DSS. We can confirm that on Good Friday 7th April we arrived at Abuja to visit one of our branches when we were picked up by about 6 armed agents who did not identify themselves as DSS or any law enforcement agency.
“My wife, myself and my aide, Emmanuel Ezerika were forced to surrender our mobile phones and enter the vehicles where we were taken at considerable speed to what we later learned were DSS HQ. The officers, some of who wore balaclavas were not immediately recognisable as DSS.
“Our pictures were taken, fingerprints and data collected and we were locked inside a room with no real knowledge as to the grounds for our arrest. After a lengthy interrogation, it appears media and social media pressure forced DSS to release my wife and I.
“My aide remains under DSS custody and thus far, DSS has been elusive as to his exact whereabouts. We will not divulge the particulars of the investigation at this point as we are still awaiting the safe release of my aide.
“Out of concern for my young children and my wife’s well-being, we made the unfortunate decision to leave Nigeria abruptly. This decision did not come lightly but with considerable prayer and counsel from our board, trustees, colleagues in the ministry and respective families.
“I can confirm that we are safe and will continue to work and pray for a new Nigeria. We remain resolute that we will return to the nation that we have grown to call our home but for now, we will continue to press, pray and give God no rest until Nigeria becomes a praise on the earth.
“We did not come to Nigeria under any illusion of comfort. We came to serve the Lord, fully aware of the danger. We want you to know that Tahmar and I remain strong and unwavering in our commitment to Nigeria and the many great leaders we have encountered during our time there.
“We want to thank every leader and friend who reached out, called, texted and posted. We are so grateful. This is not goodbye. This is see you soon! In a new and better Nigeria.”