By Maynard Manyowa
Wisdom is something which is very vital in Christianity, business, or life for that matter. When King Solomon was granted one wish, the bible states that he chose wisdom, and that because of that alone, he became the greatest men, and king to grace the times of his existence.
Self-styled and self-proclaimed contemporary Prophet, Walter Magaya is by contrast a cult hero figure who divides opinion all across Zimbabwe’s predominant Christian society. Largely because his meteoric rise into religious stardom has coincided with a never ending series of scandals.
Magaya’s popularity has been punctuated, if not fuelled by scandalous rumours, accusations of promiscuity and fraud, provocative attacks and battles with various organs of society like the media, tragedies that have resulted in loss of life, and monumental deception.
The clamour around his person is probably warranted too. Right from the beginning, Magaya impishly sought attention through melodrama.
Before Magaya’s meteoric rise, he sought to ride on Prophet TB Joshua’s attractiveness by naughtily juxtaposing himself right next to the revered Prophet and his brand. He shockingly tried to entice a potential following by imprinting signatures on his posters that read, “Recently back from SCOAN in Nigeria”.
This was plain gutter advertising and a hoax of all sorts since TB Joshua’s SCOAN frowns upon this practise. The Synagogue Church of All Nations recurrently warns its viewers and devotees against men of cloth who claim to carry a special grace simply because they visited the church. Yet Magaya did it anyway, and in truth this particular action was disreputable, and almost rogue.
Fast forward a few years later, Prophet Magaya’s TB Joshua farce hit the headlines after he allegedly claimed that he would bring TB Joshua to Zimbabwe. A fictitious declaration peddled as fact, which Prophet TB Joshua embarrassingly refuted.
His rebuttal, was striking. In his broadcast, Prophet TB Joshua even refused to acknowledge Magaya was a Prophet. He referred to him as ‘Mr’ Magaya. A spiritually incriminating indictment, that a man Prophet Magaya claims is his spiritual father refuses to acknowledge his own son’s prophetic ability.
Prophet TB Joshua also took a wise swipe at Magaya, by drawing the attention of his followers to the fact that his church did not have a single Prophetess! Yet Magaya’s wife is considered a prophetess by Walter Magaya himself and his entire church.
Dirty dancer ‘Bev Sibanda’
Following this incident, Walter Magaya was back in the headlines, for famously converting socialite and dirty dancer ‘Bev Sibanda’. That ‘marriage’ catapulted Magaya into local stardom. Bev, a star, an erotic dancer of rare pedigree in a conservative nation, who upon Magaya’s intervention was quitting the night life in favour of Jesus.
People flooded Magaya’s church after this ‘miracle’. A Prophet who had turned a belly dancer into a saint was always going to command huge audience.
That marriage did not last long nevertheless. In no time, Bev Sibanda turned on Walter and his church. The business Magaya opened for her flunked spectacularly, there was discontent among church members who questioned why the ‘stripper’ was afforded such high luxury and special attention.
Bev quit Christianity, and ‘divorced’ the Prophet. She was back shaking her abdomen in Zimbabwe’s night spots, and taking ironic digs at PHD Ministries at every chance, for long ensuring Magaya remained in the press, albeit for the wrong reasons.
In the preceding months Magaya remained front-page news. He was accused of bedding a man’s wife, and was subsequently sued. That saga in question only ended with a reported out of court settlement. This is not only ironic, but very telling. Innocent people do not negotiate with terrorists. Right?
In preceding days, scandal after scandal followed Prophet Magaya. A stadium disaster claimed many lives, he was accused impregnating a girl in Botswana who was to later die in mysterious circumstances, and he allegedly bribed journalists to inflate figures of attendance at his all night prayer, among many other indignities.
All the while Magaya engaged in shock tirades, attacking journalists, threatening them with unspecified actions, as his followers harassed, intimidated and beat up anyone who dared life a finger of criticism against the self-proclaimed leader.
Fights with Apostolic Sects
As you read, Magaya is engaged in a fierce battle with The Apostolic Sects of Zimbabwe. They have exchanged insults, allegations, and gut piercing blows.
Although the Vapostori allegedly initially provoked Magaya, he sadly lacked the foresight to realise that they wanted a bitter brawl. Magaya’s responses have only ignited the scuffle, and for the umpteenth time in 2 years, Walter Magaya finds himself caught in an avoidable storm and quoting controversy.
Prophet W Magaya has disgracefully enjoyed the coverage of media in Zimbabwe for all the immoral reasons. His reputation, his own conduct, and the things he stands accused of, all point to the subject at hand, that he is afflicted by a serious deficiency in fundamental wisdom commensurate with the title of “prophet” and out of sync with the entire creed of Christianity.
Jesus is a very wise man, so is the trio of Ezekiel Guti, Emmanuel Makandiwa, and TB Joshua. Suffice to say had all these enticements fallen to these men, these indignations would have been avoided. But because they fell to Magaya, they see the light of day.
I am not saying Magaya is a very unscrupulous man, No. For all I know, he could just be a gullible man of mercy who has repeatedly trusted the wrong people. But either way, his wisdom would be subject to scrutiny, and as dusk approaches, Prophet Walter Magaya may yet again be involved in another scandal, or I could suffer some mysterious fate because of my point of view.
But the realities will remain engraved in the minds of many. For a man who claims to be a Prophet, a man who claims to talk to Jesus himself, Walter Magaya surely has seen far too many otherwise avoidable scandals.
If he is genuine prophet, he is a very impulsive prophet with a bad reputation, and that would be strange, because imprudence is not a quality that is consistent with the Kingdom of God.
Enough said, This Is Africa!
Maynard Manyowa is a political and social analyst. You can reach him for feedback via his website – www.maynardmanyowa.com , via email – firstname.lastname@example.org , on Twitter – @iAmKudaMaynard or by liking his FB page – Maynard Kudakwashe Manyowa